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A personal view of the ‘Sheare Street Social Club’

By Proinnsias Breathnach
Proinnsias Breathnach has passed on some of his memories to us about the ‘Sheare Street Social Club’, several Abbeyside people have approached with information regarding the facilities of the club. Proinnsias about sums up what most of them remember.

‘I was a regular denizen of the Sheare’s Street Social Club in the late 1960s when I was in my late teens.  We just called it “The Club”.  During this period the Chairman was Maurice “Monsy” Waters, although we only ever saw him at AGMs, as he was never to be seen in the club on a day-to-day basis.

Going into the club from the street, there was a snooker table on the left-hand side.  It would more accurately be called a billiards table, as that was the game that was regularly played on the table.  Hardly ever heard of nowadays, billiards involved just three balls, two white balls (one for each player, with one having a black dot to distinguish it from the other).  The main way of scoring was to hit both the other balls in the one shot, which was known as a “cannon”, worth two points.  If you potted the red ball, you got three points, with the red ball being replaced on the table.  If you potted the other player’s ball, you got two points, but his ball was not replaced, which meant the only way you could score from then on was through potting the red.  The first person to get to 101

points won the game. It was a three-quarters size table, which made it easier to play billiards than with a full-size table, which may help explain why it was more popular than snooker.

On the right hand side of the room there was a radio on the wall which mainly played Radio Luxembourg in the evenings.  There may have been a darts and a rings board there, (there was)  but I don’t remember them.  At the far end of the room from the entrance door was the area where cards were played.  This was the most popular activity in the club, with the big games being 45, Poker and Brag (a 3-card version of Poker which was a great favourite of Gerald “Tricky” Cashman, who lived just down the street.

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