HORSESHOE PITCHERS CLUB – BALLSBRIDGE PARK
Sorry about the quality of the photograph.
Many who know the area may have noticed the disappearance of the old public toilet building in Ballsbridge. To the best of my knowledge it was demolished in August 2014 to allow for extensive flood relief works to take place. The location is still, a building site.
What many may not be aware of is that a Horseshoe Pitchers Club meet on the green area that adjoined the building in question.
The rules to horseshoe pitching vary according to country, area, town and even pub or fair. Horseshoe Pitching is an outdoor game played between two people (or two teams of two people) using four horseshoes and two throwing targets (stakes) set in a sandbox area. The game is played by the players alternating turns tossing horseshoes at stakes in the ground, which are traditionally placed 40 feet (12 m) apart. Modern games use a more stylised U-shaped bar, about twice the size of an actual horseshoe.
Here is an interesting letter published in 2001: “ Various statements have been made recently on radio, TV and in the national press about the £100,000 grant awarded to the Ballsbridge Horseshoe Pitchers club for the purpose of building their clubhouse. As much of the comment was misleading and resulted in adverse publicity for this association, we requested the Ballsbridge club to clarify the situation. We feel this has not been done adequately.
The facts are that the Horseshoe Pitchers Association of Ireland, and not the Ballsbridge Horseshoe Pitchers Club, is the national governing body for the sport in Ireland. Our association represents all clubs affiliated to us, one of which is the Ballsbridge club. The Ballsbridge club will be the sole recipient of the grant from the Department of Tourism, Sport and Recreation; this association will receive none of it. We wish the Ballsbridge Horseshoe Pitchers Club and the local community and committee good luck with their venture. – Yours, etc.
Michael Redmond, Secretary, The Horseshoe Pitchers Association of Ireland, Dublin 4.”
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