Elaine, Henry and I headed off to Thomond Park for the European Rugby Champions Cup clash between Munster and Saracens. It was my first visit to Thomond Park and what a spectacular outing it was. It was a bit of trek to Limerick but Buttevant was no problem on the day. Charleville was a different matter with a detour on the way down but traffic congestion was far worse on the way home due, in no small way, to bad traffic management on the Limerick side. Anyway we got to Thomond safe sound and in plenty of time for the match. Click HERE for stadium details.
Elaine had arranged the tickets and a parking pass for the disabled parking area in which there was plenty of spaces. Click HERE for ticket details and application form. Stewards were in attendance to ensure that the spaces weren’t misused. We were only a very short distance from the stadium and we immediately headed for the bar which is totally accessible as is the disabled toilet in the bar. I was the chauffeur so no drinkies for me but my two companions managed to slug a couple.
The steward at our entry gate was friendly and the lift to our allocated seating area could accommodate a number of wheelchairs. There are a large number of bays for wheelchair users and their companions and the circulation space was commendable. There are a number of other wheelchair accessible areas around the pitch but our seats were probably the best available. We were nicely located on the same level as the camera crews between the 10m line and 22m line. Absolutely brilliant! As I said the circulation space was fantastic and there were 4 disabled accessible toilets. They were spacious with the appropriate grab rails and emergency pull cords and outward opening doors. I find it difficult to understand why most disabled accessible toilets have inward opening doors. In the event that an impaired user falls and is lying on the floor there is no way in. All doors should be outward opening.
The downside to parking so close to the stadium is the traffic congestion getting away after the match but that is a small price to pay for the convenience. That Munster secured a great and well deserved victory and the fact that the ref, in my opinion, was a tosser have not coloured my report. Thomond Park is an amazing stadium with fantastic facilities for people with any class of disability and everybody concerned should be applauded and the venue supported. I will definitely be going back.