Things Inchicorian and dates for your Diary

AuthorMessage DateMessage
Gerry mc Geough05/09/2009A PICNIC TO REMEMBER..

The 1889 All Ireland Football Final – played in Inchicore between Dublin and a barefooted Clare and also
To remember the great Kathleen Mills


2.00-3.00 CUL CAMP for kids with Liffey Gaels

3.0 Blessing of the ball at the Oblates

3.15 Arrival of ball to Abercorn Terrace

3.30 Procession to the Pond Field

3.40 Formation of the Guard of honor on the Pitch

3.45 Presentation of ball and plaque to the family
of Kathleen Mills in honour of her sporting

The presentation will be made by the legendary Clare Hurler Jimmy Smyth

Keith Barr throwing the ball in.

Bring your own Picnic to celebrate the day. Tea and refreshments in the club.

Races, tug of war, penalty shoot outs, lots of events.
Gerry mc Geough05/09/2009Friday October 2nd at the Inchicore Sports & Social Club

In unique & atmospheric candlelit surroundings

Inchicore On Track







Further info

Friday October 2nd at the Inchicore Sports & Social Club

This Event is a fundraiser for Inchicore on Track

Ticket prices TBA
See local shops for posters later this week.

Tom D12/09/2009 I heard the barman in the black Lion talking about this last night.
This sounds a great idea. we have a boy of three and have moved into the village recently with no summer behind us and the weather as it is ,we will be going along.
Paul Cullen17/09/2009Here's a write-up from today's Irish Times on this weekend's event in the CIE Estate:

An Irishman's Diary

NEVER MIND that little skirmish scheduled for Croke Park next Sunday afternoon. The big GAA event of the weekend will be a day earlier, at another of Dublin’s great sporting venues: the Pond Field in Inchicore. It’s behind the Sports and Social Club, since you have to ask. And on Saturday, 120 years after the original event was held in the same village, just up the road, it will be the scene of a re-enactment – after a fashion – of the 1889 All-Ireland hurling final.

Only the second All-Ireland, and the first to be held in Dublin (the inaugural decider had been in Birr two years previously) the 1889 event is famous for at least one other reason: that the losing team, Clare, played barefoot. There is a story that its players – all drawn from the Tulla club – overdid their socialising the night before and thus ended up, if not footless, bootless. But the truth is probably more prosaic.

It wasn’t unusual then for GAA teams to bare their soles while playing. And had Tulla/Clare preferred to be shod, they could always have sought advice from the opposition: Dublin, represented by the Kickhams club. It was the tradition then for GAA clubs to be formed around trades or professions, rather than geographic areas. Thus, Kickhams were the drapers club, dominated by staff from Clery’s and Guiney’s.

In the event, the Claremen’s self-inflicted deficiencies in the footwear department surely cost them the game. They were comfortably ahead at half time. But heavy rain made the pitch extremely muddy, despite the sawdust brought from the nearby sheds of the Great South Western Railway company. As everything else got wetter, the Clare scores dried up; and a glut of second-half goals gave the title to the Dubs.

The fact that the referee was from Dublin too was not a factor, apparently. Nor should it have been, because hurling was a foreign game in the capital then. Most of the winning team were from Cork.

Health and safety considerations have prevented a too-faithful reenactment of the match this weekend. And just to confuse the issue – while also emphasising how broad-minded the GAA has become since 1889 – the Dublin and Clare teams will be played by females: camogie players from the local Liffey Gaels club. But in a nod to the original game, both captains will walk barefoot onto the pitch, before a formal shodding ceremony in which it is hoped that Dublin football star Keith Barr will prove himself fit to lace their boots.

The involvement of camogie teams is a nod to the other point of the day’s celebrations: to honour a local woman held by common consent to be the greatest camogie player ever. Kathleen Mills, who died in 1996, won an unmatched 15 All-Ireland senior titles with Dublin from the 1940s onwards. Described by Micheal Ó Muircheartaigh as “the most elegant camogie player he has seen”, and with skills including the ability to score from sideline frees, she was the female equivalent of Christy Ring and Henry Shefflin, combined.

A ball used in Saturday’s ceremonies will be presented to Kathleen’s widower by a Clare hurling great, Jimmy Smyth, who is worthy of celebration in his own right. He played for his county from 1945 to 1967, an era when the alleged curse of Biddy Early was at its most powerful. Yet despite not winning a provincial title, never mind an All-Ireland, he was good enough to be named on the Munster Team of the Century.

It is perhaps less of a surprise, given all the games he lost with Clare, that when he went on to became a mature student in his 60s, he chose to read for a BA in philosophy. He followed this up with a Masters degree studying that great tradition of Irish life, the GAA ballad: probably the finest practitioner of which was Kerryman Bryan McMahon. It was McMahon who wrote the immortal verse: “Now Cork is bet, the hay is saved/ The thousands wildly sing/ They speak too soon, my sweet gossoon/ For here comes Christy Ring”.

But as a qualified master of the form, the Clareman has added to the repertoire, with a ballad commemorating the doomed heroics of “the noble men of Tulla” in 1889. Here’s a brief sample: “As barefoot then they played the game/ And tried the Dublin boys to tame/ A heavy downpour spoiled their fame/ The sun refused to shine.”

Amid the processions, picnics, and other celebrations planned for Saturday, it is confidently expected by the organisers that Jimmy will perform the song live. Further details of the event are at