A major recruitment drive is now on to fill up to 50 new posts at Newbridge Greyhound Stadium, which will re-open its doors on September 9 with a new focus as an entertainment venue, as well as a racing destination.
Last week, it was announced that the stadium, which closed last March, has been taken over by the Morgan & Franklin Consortium.
Managing Director, David Morgan pledged the facility will offer racing every Friday and Saturday night and will give away over €300,000 in prize money in its first 12 months of operation.
“We are really excited about it and we are hoping that everyone will get on board and support it,” Mr Morgan told the Leinster Leader.
The new boss has close ties with the Newbridge facility, having managed the bar and catering services at the track for three years prior to its closure.
“We are planning to re-look and re-develop the business model and streamline it,” he stressed.
“The support has been brilliant. I have two phones and they have gone into melt down over the past few days with the good wishes and messages coming through. I think a lot of people were sad at the loss of the facility and they really want it to succeed. We have two big fund-raisers already booked in,” he added.
When asked if the staff, who were let go in March, would be taken on again, he explained the new positions would be a mix of new staff and former staff.
A statement issued by the consortium stressed the importance of the re-opening to local fans and patrons. “A continued pathway to excellence of service and product offering will be central to the success of our entertainment offering. The venue itself will feature a full 104-seater panoramic restaurant, two corporate suites and three bars. The stadium’s vibrancy will significantly enhance the contributions to the local economy, also helping establish Newbridge as an attractive leisure and entertainment hub.”
Through the support of the late PJ Cox, together with Dermot and David Cox, the Cox name has been synonymous with greyhound racing in the region since the tracks inception. Mr Morgan says, “This association will continue with the running of the very prestigious Cox cup which in the past has witnessed some of Ireland’s greatest greyhounds compete in the most spectacular fashion”.
He plans to offer various packages, promotions and a value for money professional service.
The promoters wish to acknowledge the significant contribution of Phil Meaney, Chairman of the Irish Greyhound Board, together with the board members and executive.
David Morgan has worked at a senior level with Bord na gCon in the past and was also engaged in the management of substantial pub chains in the UK during the 1990’s. He is also stadium director for Semple Stadium. The consortium also includes Peter Franklin, former head of marketing of Bord na gCon. Although a silent business partner, Franklin is taking a back seat in the day-to-day running of the venue.