Development Discussion Document

Kilmacud Crokes GAA - November 2010 


Prepared by Tom Rock and Tom Barry 


Endorsed by Hurling Committee




2.            INTRODUCTION


3.            NEEDS and USAGE ANALYSIS


4.            ISSUES and OPTIONS   



Appendices – Needs and Usage Analysis



Executive Summary

  • This document is a FRAMEWORK that invites detailed engagement by all members of the club.
  • Its aim is to move us on to informed actions and decisions.
  • It seeks consensus, is a basis for progress and open for discussion.
  • With 83 teams and large nursery numbers the Club’s long term available playing facilities are under strong pressure.
  • Needs & Usage analysis shows our greatest shortfalls are in March, October, September and February.
  • This arises, primarily, due to the lack of floodlit, weather durable facilities.
  • The other times of greatest demand are May and April.
  • This is especially so for adult and older age group teams.
  • Some alleviating measures (e.g. hire) can and are being taken short term.
  • In the longer term we see four main options:

(i)    Developing Glenalbyn as the floodlit club showpiece/hub hosting “big games” with enhanced viewing facilities.  Using Silverpark as the main training area and for secondary games.  Also using a series of satellite venues.

(ii)   Developing Silverpark as the club showpiece hosting “big games” with enhanced    viewing facilities.  Also using it as a training area and for secondary games with Glenalbyn as a floodlit synthetic all weather training area.  In addition using a series of satellite venues.

(iii)   Total or partial re-location to a green/brown field site.

(iv)  Joint Venture.

  •  In the current economic climate and in the absence of identifiable opportunities it is difficult to see the latter two options being advanced.
  • The first two options are on land already owned by the Club and are thus more within our own control.
  • On the basis there should be c.€200,000 in the development fund the costs involved are manageable and can be phased – one possible element could be delivered within 3 years and without borrowing.
  •  Key decisions include:

-       whether the club wishes to have a showpiece venue

-       if so, where this should be located

-       the view the club takes on natural versus synthetic surfaces

-       future numbers planning 

·          Matters should now be moved on by the Development Work Group envisaged by the Agreement adopted at EGM on 11th February 2010 (composed of members nominated by the sections) commencing work immediately, taking relevant professional advice and engaging in appropriate club wide member consultation/information sessions so as to have a definitive set of proposals for the development of club facilities put to an EGM on or before 31st March 2011. 



Facilities development has been well aired in the past.  In a document put to the club executive on 30th October 2008 the position was summarised as follows:


On 20th November 2008 an EGM was held to discuss a proposed five year development plan and the need for the club to develop and enhance its facilities was recognised. 


A desire to see progress on development was central to the Agreement adopted by a 68% vote at EGM on 11th February 2010.  This Agreement has provided the basis for real progress on the other activities envisaged by the Agreement (e.g. Commercial, Membership, Grounds and Finance). 


Unfortunately a log jam has arisen in relation to development.  The Agreement provided for a number of work groups to be set up including development and for same to be made up of nominees from the sections. The chairman of the development work group (who was nominated by the football committee) has stated he will work with whoever is on the work group but the football committee has taken the formal position they don’t want to work with either of two hurling nominees. For several reasons, including the content and nature of the Agreement and the right of a committee to pick who represents it, we find such a stance unacceptable.


Rather than be diverted, and taking the view matters need to progress to the point where informed decisions and actions can be taken, we decided to do something tangible.  This document is the result and adopting the premise that a comprehensive needs and usage analysis is fundamental to sound decision making it attempts to:

  1. Present a draft Needs and Usage analysis,

  2. Draw interim conclusions from the analysis,

  3. Present and discuss a range of issues and options, and

  4. Outline a Roadmap for the next stages of the project


Needs and USAGE Analysis

Any development programme should be underpinned by a thorough Needs and Usage analysis.  A draft analysis is contained in Appendix 1.  While this is the product of many hours work it can no doubt be improved upon.  Observations and comments are both invited and welcome.


Principal Interim Conclusions


The chief interim findings are:

·                     Kilmacud Crokes fields 83 teams and has large nursery numbers,


·                     In 2010 we played 1082 games, 610 at home,

·                     Using 4212 pitch hours (1069 for games and 3143 for training),



·                     We are most challenged in March, October September and February,


·                     This arises due to the lack of floodlit, weather durable facilities,

·                     The next times of greatest shortfall are May, November and April,

·                     The experience differs for Adult and Juvenile (under 13 down) teams,

·                     Adult team needs are not met in March, September, October or May,

·          We have an acute shortage of facilities for teams who are involved in the latter stages of championships, towards the end of the season,



  • Juvenile team needs are not met in March, February, October or November,

  • This is due to lack of suitable winter training facilities,


·           While the numbers show an overall deficit in certain months and an overall surplus in others, this camouflages the real deficits.  Combining numbers implies cross subsidy of surplus hours.  This may work for juveniles receiving adult surplus but does not work for adults as juvenile pitches are generally not suitable,

·                     Outside hire relieves pressure,

·                     There is scope to better manage the usage of existing pitches, and

·                     Planning for future numbers needs to be undertaken.


Apart from the bare numbers other criteria need to be borne in mind.


The GAA Year


The GAA year can be said to run from mid-January/mid-February to late October/mid November.  By mid-February all teams are in preparation mode for the year ahead.  At an overview level, the majority of teams have a game every second week with breaks around July/August from matches. Football games start late January/early February and Hurling matches start early March. The games and training load increases with long evenings from April through to early/mid May when exams lead to a fall off. For most of July there are few juvenile games.  From mid August the holiday season comes to an end. September and October are heavy Championship months with demand influenced by the success of teams. 


Facilities Currently Used:


Listed below are the facilities currently used by club teams with a short commentary on each venue.


For playing purposes Kilmacud Crokes has access to eight grass based pitches.  These plus the Paddock can be described as our long term available facilities.


1.         Pairc de Burca – Club owned

Due to its current length Pairc de Burca is not suitable for male games from under 14/15 upwards or for premier adult games.


2.         Silverpark 1 – Club owned

As this is the Club’s only full length pitch it is the most sought after pitch.

3.         Silverpark 2 – Club owned

Pitch not as long as Silverpark 1 and more susceptible to weather interruption.  Less desirable and not suitable for top teams.


4.         Deerpark 1 – Local authority owned

Used under agreement renewed annually.  Cost c€1,000pa (2 pitches).  Suitable for games up to under 13 (male) and under 14/15 (female).  Drainage issues.


5.         Deerpark 2 – Local authority owned

Used under agreement renewed annually.  Suitable for games up to under 13 (male) and under 14/15 (female).  Drainage issues.


6.         Oatlands 1 – School owned

Used under agreement renewed annually.  Cost €6,000pa (2 pitches).  Usable for games up to under 13.


7.         Oatlands 2 – School owned

Used under agreement renewed annually. Usable for games up to under 13.


8.         Ballyogan – Local authority owned

There are two pitches at this Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council owned venue.  We are entitled to use one and Geraldines Patrick Morans the other under rental agreements renewed annually.   It has proved very difficult to get teams to use Ballyogan.  Issues include the absence of dressing rooms, the fact the grass can often be long and the surface uneven, the lack of nets and storage facilities and the perceived general ambience.  The opening of the extended LUAS line behind one of the goals exacerbates the situation.



We use a range of internal and external facilities.


As well as the three grass pitches mentioned above, internally we use the Paddock all weather in Glenalbyn and the Hurling Arena.  While the Paddock is all-weather it is arguable that it is the lights more so than the all-weather surface that make it so popular.



In addition to the five grass pitches noted above externally we use or have used:

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St Kilians

Coiste rent floodlit synthetic surface soccer/hockey pitch


Mount Anville

Camogie/Ladies football used for limited training.



Various surfaces and sizes.  Used by Camogie, but also by hurling and football over the years.


Bray Emmets

Football and Hurling rent synthetic All Weather facility.


Clonkeen College

New part natural/part synthetic surface under construction.  Football use for training.



Grass.  Football have some access.



Synthetic adult size GAA pitch.


Colaiste Eoin

Grass.  Teams have in the past had access.


Wesley College     

Synthetic surface.  Winter 2010 Under 12 football have started to use.


Blue Pool, Monkstown

Synthetic surface cages suitable for younger ages.



Synthetic hockey pitch.


Clanna Gael/Fontenoy     

New natural superior drained surface.  Has been used by Football and Hurling.  Not always easy to get.


We estimate the use of external facilities costs the club c€33,500 per annum (or €27,500 if Oatlands is excluded).


3.         ISSUES and OPTIONS

In our view development needs to be approached at two levels:

  1. Long Term Strategic, and

  2. Meeting Immediate Needs.


A         Long Term Strategic


What should we be striving for?  This includes deciding where the club is going to be centred and what we mean by this.  Where we are going to have our main pitch?  Do we need a main pitch at all?  If we do, what will we use it for?   What type of surface etc.?


The long term options can be categorised to include:

(i)   Developing Glenalbyn as the floodlit, natural surface, club showpiece/hub hosting “big games”, possibly with enhanced viewing facilities.  Using Silverpark as the floodlit main (natural or synthetic surface) training area and for secondary games.  Also continuing to use a series of satellite non-owned venues.

(ii)  Developing Silverpark as the floodlit, natural surface, club showpiece hosting “big games” with enhanced viewing facilities.  Also using it as a floodlit (natural or part synthetic surface) training area and for secondary games with Glenalbyn as a floodlit synthetic (natural?) all weather, mainly training area.  Continuing to use a series of satellite non-owned venues.

(iii)         Total or partial re-location to a green/brown field site.

(iv)         Joint Venture.

Below, we examine arguments for and against each option.  Before doing so we briefly address some other relevant issues.



Expert Advice

We have decided to focus primarily on options (i) and (ii) as they are more directly controllable by the club.  This examination is conducted from a lay perspective.  We are the first to acknowledge that expert advice will be needed to progress and that such advice could markedly impact on the ultimate decision the club might take.  Among the areas where expert assistance would be of benefit are:


  • Comment on Needs and Usage analysis and proposed usage levels,

  • Site investigations, soil analysis, existing grass cover assessment, topographical assessment ,

  • The options available including natural turf and synthetic pitch options with the pros and cons,

  • The maintenance associated with each option and the costs of such maintenance,

  • The capital construction costs for the approaches provided,

  • Planning practicalities,

  • How to make best use of the existing footprint/s,

  • Lighting levels, and

  • Interim solutions to obviate the loss of pitches and disruption while any proposed development takes place.



Increasing Numbers

Our increasing nursery intakes have been well heralded and require examination to assess their likely impact on facilities demand.  While fall off is a feature it is reasonable to suggest the raised numbers will eventually work their way up through the age groups placing more strain.  A simplistic response might be to cap numbers but this might not meet with universal approval as while some sections find it difficult to cope others feel they have not yet reached the optimum figure.





Central to any decision by the club to opt for one or the other will be the view taken on natural versus synthetic surfaces.  There are several examples of artificial playing surfaces around the country.  The major argument usually advanced in favour of synthetic surfaces is that they give significantly greater year round use.  From our enquiries, this would appear to be the case but the more one delves into it the more complex the debate becomes. 


It has been suggested that no synthetic product available on the Irish market is sufficiently tested for the requirements of hurling and football, in that none replicates the performance criteria of natural grass.  The cost of installing a synthetic surface is generally two and a half to three times that of laying a natural pitch.  We understand that synthetic pitch carpets need to be replaced every 10 years or so with “sensible” usage and earlier with higher usage. There is also considerable maintenance involved with such pitches, something not always undertaken as it should be by clubs.  A substantial sinking fund needs to be put by every year to replace the carpet at the end of its life span.  Warranties for synthetic pitches are often inapplicable if usage exceeds 25-30 hours per week.  Well drained natural pitches, in conducive weather (wet and warm in summer), can provide 20-25 hours per week which is at or near the recommended capacity usage for synthetic surfaces.




Floodlighting, including the requisite level of same, is another matter that brings issues.  One of these is planning, not only from an intrusiveness of lighting point of view but also the intensification of use.  It is also the case that fast action small playing objects and long viewing distances (e.g. Hurling/Camogie) require higher lighting levels than larger playing objects and closer viewing distances (e.g. Gaelic football).





Funding and the capacity to raise monies is critical.  This is all the more so in the present economic climate where borrowing is difficult.


At the AGM held on 9th December 2008 the following motion introducing a development levy was passed:


This AGM supports the introduction of compulsory levy on all individual adult or family members of either €75 or €150.  The €75 levy shall apply to those who contributed €500 to the Paddock All Weather Development.  The €150 levy shall apply to all other members whether individual or family.


The levy shall be ring-fenced for further pitch development with a dedicated bank account controlled by the Club Executive and shall remain in place for a maximum of five years. 

The levy to be applied to all players under 16 years of age will be determined by the Executive Committee in consultation with the officers of the committees responsible for those members.”


As will be seen from the following table, we estimate the development fund should stand at over €200,000.

Paid  Paddock tax refunds €50,000  
Paid  159 Club member units €17,050  
Paid to Coiste 323 non-club member and 76 club member families €29,925  
Paid to Juv. ladies & U13-U15 Estimate to Balance 2009 Club Accounts €4,025  
  Balance per 2009 Accounts   €101,000
Unpaid 47 juvenile club member families who did not contribute to Paddock underpaid @ €75 €3,525  
Unpaid ? Club Member Units (non Paddock contributors) who underpaid @ €75 ?  
Unpaid Estimated 265 unpaid club members @ say €100 (either €75 or €150) each €26,500  
  Total 2009   €131,025
Paid  385 Club member units paid @ either €75 or €150 €40,823  
Paid to Coiste 399 non-club member and 3 club member families @ €75 €30,150  
Paid to juv ladies fb/camogie Estimate €2,000  
  Estimated Total Received (in absence of 2010 Accounts)   €72,973
Unpaid ? Club Member Units who did not contribute to Paddock @ €75 ?  
Unpaid Estimated 140 unpaid club members @ say €100 (either €75 or €150) each €14,000  
  Total 2010   €86,973
  2009 & 2010 Total   €217,998
  Say €200,000 in total to the end of 2010    

If our estimate is correct it seems the levy has not been collected from a high proportion of members.  Apart altogether from the fact the funds are required, for the sake of equity for those who have paid, a mechanism to collect the outstanding sums should be put in place.


Below we present a projection of estimating a target figure of nearly €500,000 for the Development Fund by 2013.  As will be seen later this could be enough to finance phase 1 of one of the options presented without recourse to borrowing.



There has been a certain degree of confusion in relation to the mechanics of collecting the development levy and this may benefit from streamlining.  At different stages the levy has been collected by sections and by the Kilmacud Glenalbyn Sports Club.  For those unfamiliar, the Kilmacud Glenalbyn Sports Club is a separate legal entity that runs Glenalbyn House and the board is composed of representatives from tennis, swimming and snooker along with those appointed by the GAA club.  Unusually for a GAA club, membership fees go not to the GAA club but to the Sports Club and are used for Glenalbyn House related costs.  Development levy monies are received by the Sports Club on behalf of the GAA Club for transmission to the account mentioned in the motion.


While the Development Fund, and any additions to it over the coming period, provides a welcome boost a comprehensive fundraising programme will have to be put in place which will look at both internal and external sources of funds. 

(i)                    Glenalbyn as Showpiece

We need to define what we mean by “Glenalbyn as Showpiece”.


The document put before the club executive 30th October 2008, described Glenalbyn as “our flagship pitch ……. where a quality grass based pitch with superior drainage is required and would come into its own for championship games and Sevens in September.” Subject in particular to it being possible to sufficiently lengthen the pitch to take senior games we consider this a good articulation. 


Whether we can get the necessary additional length is dependent on completing the agreement made with Treasury Holdings to acquire some of the Stillorgan Shopping Centre overflow car park.  The essence of that agreement was that in return for co-operating with Treasury’s proposed Stillorgan Shopping Centre (SSC) development the club would receive a piece of land which is currently part of the SSC overflow car-park if such development received planning permission, or in the event that that they did not receive planning within five years, Kilmacud Crokes had the right to purchase that same piece of land for €50,000 plus VAT.  Planning was not forthcoming and notification to exercise the €50,000 option was exercised in July 2010.  We understand that Treasury Holdings have recently indicated their willingness (subject to NAMA approval, which they expect to be forthcoming) to complete.



Assuming the necessary land can be acquired and planning obtained, it is possible to visualise Glenalbyn consisting of:

  • A full size floodlit, natural surface, championship pitch,

  • Clubhouse,

  • Paddock,

  • Hurling Arena,

  • Possible off pitch training areas, and

  • Enhanced viewing facilities (possible stand)

forming the centrepiece of the club’s central hub in Stillorgan village with multiple spoke locations.

Such a pitch could cater for adult and juvenile championship games, important league games, some training, nursery, tournaments and Sevens.


In this scenario Silverpark would be used as the main training area and for secondary games.  We would also continue to use a series of satellite non-owned venues.  Ideally Silverpark would also be floodlit and properly drained or some or all of it converted to a synthetic surface.


In attempting capital cost estimates we have used the figures presented to a club executive meeting on 30th Oct 2008.  It is reasonable to expect a significant discount in present times.  Essentially, the estimate indicates the “Glenalbyn as Showpiece” option would come in at:

(A)         €550,000 for Glenalbyn stand alone,

(B)         €1.4m if Silverpark were to become a natural floodlit venue (both pitches) and

(C)         €2.2m if Silverpark is part developed with a synthetic surface (one pitch).


Glenalbyn (natural) - A






Pitch and surrounds






Treasury option



Other costs










Silverpark (natural) -B






Pitch 1 and surrounds






Pitch 2 and surrounds






Exceptional drainage costs



Other costs










Total  A+B









Silverpark (one pitch synthetic) – C




Pitch 1 and surrounds






Pitch 2 and surrounds






Exceptional drainage costs



Other costs










Total A + C






The arguments for “Glenalbyn as Showpiece” include:

  • Glenalbyn is the club’s spiritual home,

  • Central location in the heart of the community,

  • Clubhouse and other facilities (Paddock, Arena) on site,

  • Full size pitch will allow flagship adult games to be played at club HQ with consequent local profile and clubhouse revenue benefits,

  • Natural pitch is a better playing surface than synthetic,

  • Natural pitches can now be substantially all-weather,

  • “Glenalbyn as Showpiece” with Silverpark natural is cheapest option,

  • If phased (develop Glenalbyn only first) phase 1 could be delivered within 3 years and no borrowing,

  • Communty environs make it more attractive to family units,

  • More likely to get a positive hearing from planning/development perspective,

  • Greater parking options,

  • More accessible for feeder National Schools,

  • Would be easier to encourage children/famililes to attend adult games,

  • Possibility of small training area/s, and

  • Possible viewing stand.


Among the chief arguments against are;

  • Tightness of extended site may still militate against senior games,

  • Optimal management of a new natural pitch may restrict availability (applies anywhere), and

·         “Silverpark as Showpiece” gives benefit of two adjoining pitches



(ii)                  Silverpark as Showpiece

The big picture here is using Silverpark 1 as the floodlit, natural surface, main club championship pitch hosting “big games”.  Also using it for secondary games and training with a floodlit (possibly synthetic surface) Silverpark 2 used for secondary games and training.  Glenalbyn would become a floodlit synthetic surface, primarily training area.  We would continue to use a series of satellite non-owned venues.


On the 2008 figures mentioned above we estimate the cost at:

(D)         €2.15m (both Silverpark pitches remaining natural & Glenalbyn synthetic) and

(E)         €2.95m (one Silverpark pitch synthetic & Glenalbyn synthetic).


Silverpark (natural) – D1






Pitch 1 and surrounds






Pitch 2 and surrounds






Exceptional drainage costs



Other costs










Glenalbyn (synthetic) – D2






Pitch and surrounds






Treasury option



Other costs










Total D1+D2









Silverpark (one pitch synthetic) – E




Pitch 1 and surrounds






Pitch 2 and surrounds






Exceptional drainage costs



Other costs










Total D2+E







The arguments in favour of proceeding in this manner include;

·         Size of available space,

  • Two pitches together,

  • A re-surfaced (including resolution of drainage issues) facility would allow greater usage,

  • Re-surfaced with floodlights probably with synthetic surface would offer even increased usage,

  •  “Silverpark as Showpiece” with Silverpark natural costs roughly the same (€2.15m) as “Glenalbyn as Showpiece” with Silverpark part natural/part synthetic (€2.20m),

  • Can be phased , and

  • May be potential to use “finger” of land for additional training area.


Arguments Against:

  • Major issue with drainage of pitches. In our estimates we have provided a figure of €100,000 for “exceptional drainage”.  This may well be understated.  The recent adverse High Court findings in the Grennan case may severely restrict our freedom of manouvre.  In that case the judge held the club responsible for the outflow of water from our land on to the Grennans property.  At a minimum this means any future work in Silverpark impacting on drainage must proceed with extreme caution. There is the possibility that any such works might need prior High Court approval especially if same could be considered likely to affect the settlement reached in the case, which, we understand, was made an order of court. This is apart altogether from the potential precedent set by the decision in relation to any future flooding of other adjoining properties,

  • Optimal management of a new natural pitch may restrict availability (applies anywhere),

  • Planning permission for floodlighting will be very difficult in a dense residential area,

  • Even if permission granted, floodlight stanchions may impact on use of Silverpark 2 as adult pitch,

·                                 Limited viewing options as a stand not possible,

·                                 Dressing rooms but no clubhouse,

·                                 Limited parking, and

·                                 Sunshine Home development - new solar panels are vulnerable to stray balls.



(iii)                 Total or Partial Re-location to a green/brown field site


Purchase, lease or gift would be necessary for additional green or brown field development.

We have no indication that a gift is likely.  The prospect of the club being in a position to acquire on a commercial basis in the foreseeable future seems minimal.  If any of these options did arise on realistic terms they should be looked at.

Leasing may well have a role to play both in the long term and as part of the strategy to deal with our immediate needs.  An inventory of rental locations is set out above.

The possibility of a land exchange plus cash deal for Silverpark was mooted in 2008. Five pitches with choice of surface including one all weather full size pitch and dressing rooms was contemplated with, presumably, Glenalbyn remaining as club headquarters.  This was described as a mid to long term project which may never happen.  Similar arrangements were entered into by a number of clubs around the country during recent years with varying degrees of success.  We have nothing to indicate a land swap is a likely option in the foreseeable future.


(iv)                 Joint Venture

Joint ventures have previously been mooted underpinned by the notion of the Club providing finance to fund or part fund development of a facility owned by a third party in return for a long term usage arrangement.  Most discussions have centred around possible joint ventures with local schools with which the club has longstanding and much appreciated relationships.



In 2008 the Club discussed a possible joint venture with Oatlands College on a 1.5 pitches all-weather with lights development. We understand one of the issues on which this proposal foundered was the question of guaranteed long term access for the Club.  It seems the College may now have relatively immediate plans to expand its sports hall and is contemplating pitch development.  While we should engage with the College in so far as possible on their plans, we have to respect the fact the College is the property owner and there do not appear to be grounds for believing a joint venture arrangement can be arrived at in the short to medium term. 


For many years we have used the two Deerpark pitches for juvenile games up to under 13 (male) and more latterly under 14/15 (female) under a lease arrangement with Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council (DLRCC).  While we have been very glad to have the facility several issues recur.  The pitches are particularly vulnerable to drainage problems, maintenance is carried out by the local authority with the result the surface is not always as we would like it and our use, which is for matches and training, is not exclusive with anyone entitled to use the venue at other times. 

A joint venture model which seems particularly suited to our needs is the Clontarf GAA and Fingal County Council development of two natural floodlit pitches in St Anne’s Park which the club now controls under a long term arrangement.


We are aware that the Juvenile committee engaged in discussion with DLRCC with a view to investing in improvements but these discussions did not come to fruition for a number of reasons.  Similarly, Mount Merrion Football Club’s plans for floodlit development at Deerpark ran aground.


We now understand the Juvenile committee does not see significant investment in Deerpark as likely to provide any great improvement in the facilities available to us.  On that basis, we believe the best course is to continue to use the venue as heretofore, continue to urge the local authority to upgrade and revisit if the opportunity arises to pursue a course along the lines originally contemplated by the Juvenile committee


If a suitable joint venture proposal were to emerge it might well be in the clubs interests to actively pursue same and adapt its other plans.  However until such a proposal has a realistic prospect of delivery it seems the joint venture route has to be viewed as a longer term prospect.


B         Meeting Immediate Needs

Our immediate needs are:

(i)    Provision of additional floodlit weather durable training facilities during Feb/Mar and Sept/Oct/Nov

(ii)          Provision of additional match venues in Apr/May


A number of short term measures can be taken to address.  These include:

(i)            Rental

This is already happening in practice and the Club will need to continue sourcing additional facilities through renting from schools or other clubs.


(ii)          Better Use of Existing Facilities

The Needs and Usage analysis suggests there is some scope to better manage the usage of existing pitches. This will involve some “hard decisions” and has to be viewed from an overall Club perspective.


In Appendix 1 “Summary” we present a Scenario B (“Potential Usage of Long Term Facilities”).  This but an example to illustrate certain possibilities and stimulate debate.  We fully recognise a wide range of practical issues may militate against.  Nevertheless we suggest it is a worthwhile exercise.


Over the years there has been slippage in terms of the expected usage by teams of certain facilities. While accepting that everybody wants to use the most convenient or superior facilities some locations are being under-used compared to others.  For example Oatlands is barely used on Sunday mornings and Ballyogan is almost never used.  There have been recent improvements to dressing rooms in both Deerpark and Oatlands which may make these venues more attractive.  We may need to look at the possibilities for some teams sharing training slots.



Growing playing numbers (particularly at entry level Nursery) is a major issue and serious consideration needs to be given to measures to address it (see above). 


We also need to recognise and try to deal with a major “gripe” from parents of our juvenile members i.e. that they often do know from one week to the next where and when training will be on.  Ideally we should attempt to fix training schedules for the year to give greater certainty and clarity.  Early training start times cause difficulties for mentors and parents having to leave work early and navigate through peak time traffic.


A very practical stratagem, and one which many teams adopt, is to regard the forty five minute Paddock slots as being one hour slots with the preceding fifteen minutes used for warm-up outside.


It is likely a number of other mechanisms could be adopted to positive effect and a focused effort to identify same could prove very worthwhile.




Our proposal is that the club adopts this Development Document as a template to be worked on by the Development Work Group, comprising members nominated by the sections, envisaged by the Agreement adopted at EGM on 11th February 2010 with said Development Work Group commencing work immediately, taking relevant professional advice and engaging in appropriate club wide member consultation/information sessions so as to have a definitive set of proposals for the development of club facilities put to an EGM on or before 31st March 2011




It would have been impossible to undertake this work without the encouragement and assistance of many people.  We are fortunate that within the club there is a large reservoir of knowledge and expertise.  In all cases this was freely and enthusiastically made available.  In particular we are extremely grateful to Michael Culligan, Paul Gorman, Seamus Kennedy and our figures guru, Margaret Keane, for their unstinting diligence, efficiency and guidance.  We would also like to place on record our appreciation to the members of the hurling committee for their support. 



To open any section of the appendices, click on section title.


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  1. Summary Scenario A

  2. Summary Scenario B

  3. Pitch Availability Scenario A

  4. Pitch Availability Scenario B

  5. Adult Demand - Training

  6. Adult Demand - Matches

  7. Adult Demand - Hours per month analysis

  8. Adult Demand - Comments

  9. Juv Demand - Training

  10. Juv Demand - Matches

  11. Juv Demand - Hours per month analysis

  12. Juv Demand - Comments

  13. Summary Demand - Training

  14. Summary Demand - Matches

  15. Summary Demand - Hours per month analysis

  16. Hill16Crokes Matches

  17. Pitch Needs Analysis - Assumptions