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Dublin City Council have unveiled plans for the new Dalymount Park, home of Bohemian FC. The impressive design involves a realignment of the pitch but in its current form the iconic floodlights of the north Dublin ground will finally be consigned to history.
Known as the ‘Spiritual Home of Irish Football’, ‘Dalyer’ in popular parlance, was bought by the Council in 2015 with the support of the Football Association of Ireland who pledged to help develop the venue as a legacy project of Ireland’s successful bid to host games at Euro 2020.
The stadium, due to be built in a phased process with Bohs likely to vacate for at least one playing season, is set to cater for 10,000 supporters and includes club offices, community meeting spaces, and a proposed Irish football museum visitor attraction.
The designers of the stadium are the award-winning architects Gilroy McMahon who previously worked on the nearby Croke Park. The slick modern proposal, however, does away with the iconic floodlight pylons, synonymous with the famous Phibsborough ground.
RTE’s Soccer Republic programme opening includes the line ‘Follow the Floodlights’ featuring the metal structures while even the current Bohs home shirt has incorporared them in its design.
The stadium was the inspiration for ‘Dalymount Park, The Home of Irish Football’ a lovingly crafted pictorial history of one of Dublin’s most treasured landmarks, put together by journalist and lifelong League of Ireland supporter Colin White in 2015.
The foreword to the book is by Irish legend John Giles, a man who stood in the terraces as a boy watching his heroes gracing the turf at ‘Dalyer’ – a love letter to the place where he began his international career.
“The existing floodlights are a major landmark of the local area, and they hold a major significance for me and many other football fans,” says Colin White.
“But, as the pitch layout is completely altered in the new design, I think it’s unfeasible to include them in some way. I’m sure there are health and safety concerns regarding them too, being so many decades old.”
“I’m excited to look the the future of the ground. Although, it will look very different, it will always be Dalymount.”
The purchase of the stadium by Dublin City Council will ensure the future of the 125-year-old ground is bright, but, in the name of progress, it seems the new design will remove the four nods to the ground’s heyday when beneath the beams, Dalyer dazzled.
“The stadium’s past will never be forgotten, but it’s now time for new memories to be created.”