Before I was born my father started a sports shop in the basement of my grandfather’s grocery store in Navan, the small Irish town where I grew up.
As the grocery store found it more and more difficult to compete against the national grocery chains that moved into Navan in the 80s and 90s, the Sports Den thrived, gaining a widespread reputation as the place to go, whether you are a fishing, horse riding, golf, or tennis enthusiast. In the late-90s, the grocery store eventually shut down, leaving only the Sports Den.
While most “sports shops” essentially became sports clothing retail outlets, my father’s shop sold a surprising breadth and depth of sporting goods, ranging from guns, to hurleys, to fishing bait.
When I was a teenager I spent many days working in the “Sports Den”, although I wasn’t a terribly effective salesperson since I knew precious little about sport. I seemed to muddle through though.
In recent years my younger brother Simon has been taking over, and as my father did before him, Simon is placing his own stamp on the business.
For the past few months, Simon and Andrew, another of my 3 brothers, have been working on a website for the Sports Den.
They are finally ready to launch it, and it really does look excellent – go take a look at http://sportsden.ie/ and let them know what you think via the “Contact Us” page!