Fancy learning how to make a hurley?
Keen hurlers and master craftsmen may well be interested in a hurling workshop held by the renowned John Torpey in Arnotts this weekend.
For those of you who don’t know the name, John Torpey has been in the hurley-making business for over 30 years and has provided hurleys for some of the biggest names in hurling during that time. He’s also the man responsible for putting a stick in the hands of the often-fiery Davy Fitzgerald, but don’t hold that against him (we’re only messing Davy).
A native of Clare, John played inter-county hurling for Wicklow for a number of years and was part of the side that won the county’s only ever All-Ireland Junior title in 1967.
John had always made his own hurleys using only an axe, a handplane and a spokeshave, but he turned to electric handplanes in the 1970s. When his designs proved to be wildly popular amongst his peers, he invested in machinery in 1981 to make hurleys on a commercial basis and has been doing so ever since. He also passed on the tricks of the trade to his son Sean, who is currently working as a Technical Innovation Engineer with Adidas.
More recently, John gave a demonstration on the art of hurley making to a delegation including Xi Jinping, Vice President of the People’s Republic of China, in Croke Park. He will be passing on the tricks of the trade to anyone interested at Elvery’s Sports on the lower ground floor of Arnotts in Dublin this weekend.
The workshop takes place on Saturday from 1.30 – 2.30 pm and John will be joined by All-Star winning Dublin goalkeeper Gary Maguire on the day. The workshop is completely free to attend, just tell them JOE sent you.
For some more background on John and Torpey Hurleys, check out the video below and their website.