Hill 16

  (Redirected from Hill 16 (Croke Park))
The redeveloped Hill 16, 2010.
Hill 16 before a Dublin v Cork football match in 2010

Hill 16 - officially called Dineen Hill 16 and sometimes referred to as The Hill - is a terrace at the Railway End of Croke Park, the principal stadium and headquarters of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). It is located on the Northside of the Irish capital city, Dublin.

HistoryEdit

When Croke Park was first used for Gaelic games, the Railway End of the park was little more than a mound of earth. Its name was originally "Hill 60". That name came from a hill of the same name in Gallipoli on which the Connaught Rangers suffered heavy casualties in late August 1915. Contrary to common belief, the Royal Dublin Fusiliers did not participate in the Battle of Hill 60, although the latter regiment did lose heavily during the wider Gallipoli campaign (including at 'V' Beach, Cape Helles, the previous April).

"Hill 60" was used as a name throughout the 1920s and 1930s, until senior GAA figures decided it would be inappropriate to have a section of Croke Park named after a battle involving an Irish unit of the British Army. So "Hill 60" became Hill 16, a name that would link it instead to 1916, and the story emerged that it had been built from the ruins of Dublin's main thoroughfare O'Connell Street.

The Hill traditionally lags behind the rest of the stadium when it comes to comfort. It was only in 1936, when the Cusack Stand was redeveloped, that the turf and mud of Hill 16 was replaced with concrete terracing.[citation needed]

After the 1983 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final between Dublin and Galway, when overcrowding on Hill 16 caused a few supporters to suffer injuries, the GAA decided to rebuild the Hill.[1] That work was completed in 1988, allowing a capacity of 10,000 spectators.

In the mid-1990s, the GAA came up with a masterplan to rebuild the whole stadium. It was envisaged that Hill 16 would be replaced with an all-seater stand; however, this idea met with opposition from supporters of Dublin. Dublin fans have adopted Hill 16 as a spiritual home over the years. On matchdays the hill is often a sea of blue and navy and has been said to be intimidating to opposition players. Plans were also hindered by the presence of the nearby railway line and the fact that the GAA does not own any of the land behind Croke Park. The plans were redrawn and a new - terraced - area built at a cost of €25 million to replace the old Nally Stand - named after Pat Nally - and Hill 16. The new Railway End, which includes Hill 16 and the Nally terrace, is capable of holding more than 13,000 spectators.

In 2006, the Hill was renamed Dineen Hill 16 in honour of Frank Dineen,[2] who purchased the grounds for the GAA in 1908.[3]

From 2007–2009, Croke Park temporarily hosted association football and rugby union matches while the bodies overseeing these sports redeveloped their own stadium on the Southside of the city. This was agreed with the GAA so as to prevent Irish national teams having to play their games in England. For most of the international association football matches, temporary seating was added to comply with the rules of that sport's governing body. At every association football game at the stadium, seats were either added to the Hill or it remained closed (despite UEFA regulations allowing terraces to be used for friendly games). Since the redevelopment of the IRFU-owned stadium at Lansdowne Road, the usage of the stadium for association football and rugby union matches has ceased.

ViewEdit

 
View from the Hill in Croke Park.
The stadium is filled with the green and red of Mayo supporters in this photograph taken on the day of the 2004 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ O'Keeffe, Jamie. "It's that time of year again". The Munster Express. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 10 February 2007. See the section titled "Losing the plot".
  2. ^ Kelly, Seán (18 August 2009). "Dineen finally getting honour he deserves". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 21 September 2018.
  3. ^ "Frank Dineen (Limerick)". Gaelic Athletic Association. Archived from the original on 2 February 2007.

Coordinates: 53°21′41″N 6°15′01″W / 53.36146°N 6.250288°W / 53.36146; -6.250288