May 2 2004 was a seminal moment in the history of Drogheda. The Bridgeford, home of infamous nightclub Chu Chu’s burnt down. Things were never the same again.
The Bridgeford captured the zeitgeist of a Drogheda in flux, a pre-Celtic Tiger Drogheda gaining in confidence. That confidence manifested itself with the construction of the first leisure centre north of the Boyne.
Locals scoffed when it was built. “It’ll never last,” they naysayed. “Sure what would we be wantin’ with a leisure centre with its Jacuzzi and tennis courts around here? Haven’t we the Lourdes church for all our recreational needs. And the Glen?”
But as locals became more ofay with the idea of extravagance and creature comfort, so the Bridgeford thrived. For a brief period it burned so bright that flickers could be seen at dusk in Dundalk.
Upwardly mobile men in that difficult transition between Pitch & Putt and golf found a home here.
But all too soon that flame burnt out. The scene had moved on to a revamped Boyne Valley Hotel. The Bridgeford carried on. Like a great fighter chasing one last payday. And that never ends well.
Constantly under new management it was only a matter of time before it turned into a squat and a drugs factory.
It was demolished for the safety of all concerned a few years ago.
Goodnight sweet prince.