Category: Archive

A brief history of Belfast Celtic

February 17, 2011

By Staff Reporter

Admitted to the Irish league in 1896, they won their first championship in 1901. The club moved into its own ground, Celtic Park, on the Donegall Road, later renamed Paradise. The ground had a capacity of 50,000 (2,000 seated).
The club was controlled by the Barr family, and secretary Bob Barr is credited with having steered the club through the tortuous religious and political circumstances surrounding its formation. The club was run on strictly nonsectarian grounds.
It dropped out of senior football, for no publicly known reason, between 1915 and 1917 during World War I but continued to have outstanding success as a junior club. It left senior football again in 1920 after an infamous cup semifinal when a man produced a revolver and fired shots into the crowd.
The club was persuaded back into senior football in 1924, and its return marked the start of a glorious era for the club, which went on to win the league championship 10 times in 16 years and also the first post-World War II championship.

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