Semple Stadium Seating Plan
Semple Stadium 2 Year Ticket Scheme - 2011 to 2012
The key members of the Semple Stadium committee comprise of Con Hogan (Chairman), Micheal Egan (Secretary), Michael Maher, Tommy Barrett and Liam O'Donnchu (PRO).
Semple Stadium, located in Thurles, County Tipperary, Ireland is the home of Gaelic football and hurling for Tipperary and the larger Munster area. It has, what is considered, the finest playing surface in the country and is the second largest stadium in Ireland with a capacity of 53,500. Semple Stadium was officially named as the GAA's Number 2 stadium behind Croke Park in 2006.
The Dimensions of Semple Stadium Pitch are 145 metres X 80 Metres.
The grounds of where Semple Stadium is built were offered for sale in 1910 at the wish of Canon M. K. Ryan. They were purchased by local gaels for £900. To meet the cost of the purchase, an issue of shares was subscribed by the townspeople. The grounds remained in the hands of the shareholders until 1956 when they were transferred to the Gaelic Athletic Association.
In 1934 in anticipation of the All-Ireland Hurling Final being held in the grounds, extensive improvements were made to bring the field requirements up to the demands which a crowd of up to 60,000 would make. The embankments around the field were raised and extended and the stand accommodation was also extended.
In 1968, further developments took place when the Dr Kinane Stand was completed and opened. In 1971 the stadium was named after Tom Semple, famed captain of the Thurles "Blues". He won All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship medals in 1900, 1906 and 1908. The "Ardan O Riain" opposite the Kinane Stand and the terracing at the town end of the field was completed in 1981 at a cost of £500,000. This development and the terracing at the Killinan end of the field were part of a major improvement scheme for the celebration of the centenary All-Ireland Hurling Final between Cork and Offaly in 1984.
Semple Stadium upgrade project is completed
The first phase of a major refurbishment and upgrading project at Semple Stadium, Thurles involved upgrading the Kinane Stand side of the stadium, involved expenditure of €5.5 million with the overall cost of the stadium upgrade estimated at €18 million.
Phase one involved repairing the structure of the Kinane Stand and upgrading the area underneath the stand to incorporate 4 dressing rooms, 2 referees rooms, drug testing room, first aid room, counting room, ticketing room, stewards room and kitchen. Other works included:
The project design team was lead by Wilson Architecture, Cork and construction was carried out by Duggan Brothers, Templemore.
Phase 2 of the project, involved upgrading Ardan Ui Riain and terracing, improving access to the pitch, providing VIP and corporate facilities, floodlighting and irrigation, is currently at the planning stage.
Funding for the Semple Stadium upgrade project is being provided by Central Council, Munster Council, Lottery Funding, advance ticket sales and stadium income.
The current capacity of the Stadium is 53,000.
Jimmy Purcell Retires
Jimmy Purcell has been a fixture in Semple Stadium since late 1984, when he took over as groundsman at the famous venue. A native of Loughmore, but living in Thurles for many years, Jimmy retired at the end of 2006 as he was approaching his seventieth year.
During his years at the Stadium, Jimmy contributed significantly to the maintenance of what is regarded as the best playing surface for hurling in the country. He took great pride in his work and ensured that the venue was always in peak condition, not only for great match days but on other occasions also.
As well as being efficient in his job, Jimmy was a gentleman who went out of his way to make players and mentors welcome to Semple Stadium. This welcoming attitude was reflected in the remarks made by former Clare hurling star, Jamesie O’Connor, on the occasion of his retirement: ‘There was great rivalry between Clare and Tipperary but we were never made to feel anything less than welcome, and a lot of than was down to Jimmy. He’s a sound guy, a gentleman, and I’d like to thank him for everything over the years and wish him all the very best in his retirement.’
Appreciative words indeed and without doubt in no way exaggerated. They sum up the professional approach Jimmy brought to the job over a period of twenty-two years. As he retires from the job Jimmy can be happy in the contribution he made to maintaining the condition of the famous venue. His physical presence will no longer be a familiar sight on match days but he can be happy in the knowledge that the place was greatly enhanced by his work during his years as groundsman.