- Tuesday March 30th, 2021 @ 9:00
St Pat's History - 1939-40
By: Dermot Looney
Leinster League Division II - The Richmond Era Begins
In the 2019 season we began a season-by-season overview of the history of St Patrick's Athletic, finishing with the 1938-39 season in which Pat's won Division II of the Leinster League.
In the curtailed 2020 season, we looked at a decade-by-decade overview of the club, but are returning now to the Saints' pre-League era, beginning with 1939-40, the first season at home in Richmond Park.
As the guns of war sounded in Poland to mark the start of World War II, in Inchicore in Dublin, some much homelier history was being made.
St Patrick's Athletic, who had been based in the Phoenix Park, Bluebell (twice) and Chapelizod, were again on the move, but this time they had found their home. On Saturday September 2nd, 1939 - the day before hostilities were declared on the continent - Richmond Park hosted its first ever St Pat's home League game, a 2-2 draw against Hammond Lane in the Leinster League Division II, with the Saints goals coming from Gough and Whelan.
It is unclear as to why the Athletic remained in the second flight of what is now the Leinster Senior League, having won it the previous season.
Automatic promotion does not appear to have been in vogue in every league and it is also possible that there were issues related to ground availability.
Pat's shared Richmond Park, on which they had received a long-term lease from the McDowell family who owned the adjoining Richmond House pub, with League rivals St Paul's.
Pat's had played in Richmond Park on several previous occasions, including their fifth ever competitive game in 1930, but were now at home in Richer for the long haul.
You can read the article in full in our matchday programme: