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Nowlan Park

Coordinates: 52°39′23″N 7°14′22″W / 52.65639°N 7.23944°W / 52.65639; -7.23944
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Nowlan Park
Páirc Uí Nualláin
Full nameUPMC Nowlan Park
LocationO'Loughlin Road, Kilkenny, County Kilkenny, R95 WN66, Ireland
Coordinates52°39′23″N 7°14′22″W / 52.65639°N 7.23944°W / 52.65639; -7.23944
Public transitKilkenny railway station
OwnerKilkenny GAA
Capacity27,000 (18,000 seated)[1][2][3]
Field size145 x 88 m

Nowlan Park (/ˈnlən/; Páirc Uí Nualláin), known for sponsorship reasons as UPMC Nowlan Park, is the principal Gaelic Athletic Association stadium in Kilkenny, Ireland.[4] Named after James Nowlan, the longest serving President of the GAA, the stadium hosts major hurling matches and is home to the Kilkenny hurling team. It opened in 1927, replacing St. James Park.



The stadium consists of the following stands:

  • Old Stand (O'Loughlin Road) mainly bench-seats (uncovered, planning for a new roof submitted after storm damaged the old roof in 2014) (The new roof completed in late 2014 and opened in early 2015)[5][6]
  • Paddy Grace Stand (New Stand, Hebron Road) mainly bench-seats (covered)
  • Ted Carrol Stand (country end) 4,000 plastic seats (covered)[7]
  • City Terrace (covered)[8]

The target capacity under the Kilkenny GAA 2010-15 plan was 30,000.[9][10] A large portion of the Old Stand's roof was blown off during a violent storm on 12 February 2014. The rest was removed for health and safety reasons.[11][12]



History was made at Nowlan Park on 7 June 2014 when Kilkenny versus Offaly was broadcast on Sky Sports, the first time a Championship fixture of any kind was broadcast live to a UK-wide audience.[13][14] British viewers were reported to have been "amazed and confused [...] bemused but impressed [...] amused and confounded" after catching a glimpse of the broadcast.[15][16][17]

Other uses


Nowlan Park also serves as a concert venue, with festivals featuring performers such as Andrea Bocelli, Rod Stewart, Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Paul Simon, Bryan Ferry, James Taylor, Shania Twain, Dolly Parton, and in July 2013 it played host to the European tour finale of Bruce Springsteen.[18] Bruce Springsteen is due to play the venue again on 12 May 2024 as part of the Springsteen and E Street Band 2023 Tour.

Nowlan Park was also included in Ireland's bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.[citation needed]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Nowlan Park was used as a drive-through test centre.[19]

Naming rights


It was announced, in October 2019, that the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) had agreed a naming-rights deal with the Kilkenny County Board. Running for 10 years, from 2019, the sponsorship deal involved the rebranding of the ground to "UPMC Nowlan Park".[20]

See also



  1. ^ "Nowlan Park capacity to be 'capped'". hoganstand.com. 20 May 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2020.
  2. ^ "Leinster SFC: Ticket sales slow for Dublin trip to Kilkenny". The Irish Times.
  3. ^ "Rated and slated: All 32 GAA county grounds assessed – but how does yours measure up?". Irish Independent. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  4. ^ Humphries, Tom. "Kilkenny Hurling". The Irish Times. Archived from the original on 24 October 2012. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  5. ^ "Nowlan Park must wait for new roof". hoganstand.com. 27 February 2014.
  6. ^ "Proud Kilkenny's Nowlan Park now stands among the best grounds in the country – Kilkenny People". Archived from the original on 2 November 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  7. ^ "Garland | Nowlan Park, Kilkenny". garlandconsultancy.com.
  8. ^ "Nowlan Park set for further revamp". HoganStand.com.
  9. ^ "Kilkenny Strategic Plan 2010-2015" (PDF). crokepark.ie. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 July 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  10. ^ "Proud Kilkenny's Nowlan Park now stands among the best grounds in the country – Kilkenny People". Archived from the original on 2 November 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  11. ^ Knox, John (13 February 2014). "Nowlan Park roof damaged". Kilkenny People. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
  12. ^ Fogarty, John (10 April 2014). "Sky Sports' GAA debut to feature Kilkenny's roofless stand". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  13. ^ Moran, Seán (7 June 2014). "Kilkenny aiming to put on a show for new Sky audience: Daunting task facing Brian Whelehan's Offaly at Nowlan Park". The Irish Times. Retrieved 7 June 2014.
  14. ^ "5 Ways the UK will React to Hurling on Sky Sports". Hon the Banter. 2 June 2014. Archived from the original on 25 June 2014. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  15. ^ O'Brien, Kevin (8 June 2014). "The Definitive Guide to the British Reaction to Hurling". Live Gaelic. Archived from the original on 13 July 2014. Retrieved 8 June 2014.
  16. ^ "Captivated but confused... British twitter users react to hurling on Sky Sports". Sunday Independent. 8 June 2014. Retrieved 8 June 2014.
  17. ^ "11 British-based tweeters who can't believe that hurling is a thing". The Score. 8 June 2014. Archived from the original on 10 June 2014. Retrieved 8 June 2014.
  18. ^ "Two Kilkenny dates for Bruce Springsteen". RTÉ Ten. 31 January 2013. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
  19. ^ Farrell, Sinead (19 March 2020). "Kilkenny GAA's Nowlan Park will be used as drive-thru testing facility for Covid-19". The42.ie. Retrieved 19 March 2020.
  20. ^ "Sponsors name announced for Nowlan Park". Hogan Stand. 18 October 2019. Retrieved 16 April 2023.