Hurrah for Hyde Park

With Sunday’s business done, all eyes are already turning to the next challenge that awaits us, on Sunday week at Pearse Stadium. Before closing the chapter on last weekend, however, it’s worth pausing for one final thought on the Roscommon game or, to be more precise, on the venue in which it was played.

Back in 2015 when Dr Hyde Park was announced as the venue for that year’s Connacht final there was an outpouring of complaints from Mayo supporters. I should know, as I was largely responsible for igniting this indignation in this piece on the blog.

In my defence, Hyde Park was a very different place then. The venue was dilapidated, its capacity was under 20,000, the facilities there were basic and the playing surface wasn’t hectic.

Playing the game in Castlebar made much more sense from our perspective but Sligo, as was their right, held to the position that, as they weren’t in a position to host it, the Nestor Cup decider should be played at a neutral venue.

Which it was and, you know, it was fine. Even on the day I felt mildly embarrassed at the storm I’d had a hand in brewing up.

Fast forward to the following March where we played a crucial Division One match against Roscommon at Hyde Park. There was large puddles of water everywhere and the pitch was close to unplayable, on a day when we carved out a crucial four-point win.

Looking around the ground last Sunday, those days now seem so far in the past. A new playing surface was laid later in 2016 and, over the last year, much-needed development works were undertaken on the stand, increasing the seating capacity to 9,000. Associated works, including the installation of new turnstiles, toilets, an electronic scoreboard and a dedicated wheelchair area were all completed.

Last Sunday, the new improved Dr Hyde Park looked superb in the bright sunshine. A huge amount of work had been undertaken and the fruits of this labour were visible for all to see.

Well done to everyone associated with these works, which ensure that Roscommon now have a county ground to be proud of.

11 thoughts on “Hurrah for Hyde Park

  1. At the Hyde on Sunday, and in fairness facilities where really good,. Now if a place didn’t look good last Sunday with the sun splitting the stones, you be in alot of trouble. But in fairness, my only complaint last Sunday, was that it was not a full house. think offically only 13k at match, well short of 18,900 that it can hold. Be hoping for a full house with majority from Mayo @ CF

  2. Just a little under 14k was the official crowd on Sunday which was 5k more than was at the league match between the two in March. I think it would have been closer to 18k had the rossies been in better form.

    They have done great work on the ground, pitch as good as Croke Park and new seating is some upgrade from the old cement benches with muck at your feet.

  3. My only gripe was the toilets. They were porta cabins. I would have thought for such a stand there would be toilets. I know it may not be finished but I didn’t see places there that could be unfinished toilets. The toilets were alway bad in rosscommon
    And porta toilets are not a solution. You get away with it in good weather but not when it is raining.

  4. They weren’t the only loos at the venue Bb midlands but it would appear that that aspect still appears to be a work in progress.

  5. Ya there were indoor trough toilets beside the stand at the graveyard end.

    Pity they didn’t have any ice cream, hopefully next time there will be ice cream available.

  6. At least in their stand you don’t have to creek your neck to look around big, thick, ignorant support pylons.

    As much as I don’t like giving a Rossie credit for anything, I have to admit, their ground, facilities and pitch are a credit to them. They get a much bigger bang for their buck than we do in Mayo. In Hyde Park you can clearly see the fruits of their labour while in MacHale Park there are STILL huge questions marks about the quality fo the pitch, despite almost €500,000 being spent on it and the contractor forced to come back and do repairs. Not to mention the complete Omerta about just how much is still outstanding on the debt for the stadium.

    As was also mentioned above, I cannot for the life of me understand why there was no fundraising events lined up in NYC. If Kerry or Dublin had that trip every 5 years they would be paying for the extra 23kg cases coming home with them, stuffed with dollars!!! Compare that with the Rossies and their fundraising and it paints us in a bad light I’m afraid.

  7. Bring back the tubs of ice cream highorlow ,spoon is 50p and the ice cream is free , ahh those were the days .

  8. I think all of us who went to New York , Pebbles (and it was great finally to meet you while over there) are still scratching our heads about that. Another missed opportunity, to add to what’s now a rather long list where it comes to the New York trip.

  9. We advertised twice for a commercial manager to oversee fundraising etc – but no-one suitable came forward.
    In that case we should surely have hired a commercial company who specialise in fundraising etc to oversee a fundraising venture in America to coincide with the New York game.
    There isn’t another county in Ireland that is football mad that has so many millionaire ex pats living in America that we should be tapping into – if we sold our product correctly.

  10. No fundraising was done for the trip for New York, surely that should be planned well in advance

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