Friday, October 8, 2010


The RDS is one of Dublin's most iconic venues and home to the majority of the large exhibitions which take place in Ireland each year...not to mention the fantastic Failte Ireland Horse Show.
So we've (after coming across some leaflets on the venue) decided to fill you all in on a bit of history on the old venue.
A Short History of the RDS:

IN 1713 fourteen Irishmen came together in Dublin united by a common aim - to improve the poor economic conditions of the country by promoting agriculture, arts, industry and science in Ireland. This objective, they believed, could be achieved by dissemination of knowledge and new ideas.
The Society draws its strength from its independence from impartiality; it relies on its own resources to fund its activities, and on the voluntary input and support of its Members who give their time and expertise to serve on its Council and Comittees.

Some Major Milestones;
In 1750 the Dublin Society set up and managed its own Drawing School. In 1877 this was transferred to government and became the Metropolitan School of Art and Design, later the National College of Art and Design.

The Veterinary College was opened by the Society in 1800 and remained the only body engaged in veterinary education in Ireland until 1895.

From 1815 until 1922 the Society was based in Leinster House, now the home of the Oireachtas, the Irish Parliament. The Society sold its Headquarter to the new Irish government in 1922 and the RDS Lecture Theatre is now the Dáil Chamber.

While based in Leinster House, the SOciety built an art school in 1827 and the Natural History Museum in 1856.

The first Horse Show was held in 1868 on Leinster Lawn, it was moved to the Society's new Showgrounds in Ballsbridge in 1881.

The term "electron" was introduced to the English language in an article published in the Transactions of the Royal Dublin Society, written in 1891 by George Johnstone Stoney (1826-1911), the first recipient of the Society's Boyle Medal.

In 1914 the RDS purchased a stock of radium bromide for medical research purposes and later established the Radium Institute. The Institute was active in treatment of cancer for 38 years; the radium was then transfered to the new Cancer Association of Ireland, now known as St Luke's Hospital.

As early as 1882 the Society accepted a few small commercial bookings from respectable outside bodies.

The commercial arm of the RDS developed from these shows. This now contributes to the funding the Foundation aims in agriculture, arts, science and industry. The Society is therefore largely independent of external funding for its work.

Leinster play Racing Metro in the RDS on Saturday at 1.30. Tickets still available.
The Pregnancy and Baby Fair takes place on the 9th and 10th of October.
The Over 50's Show takes place in the RDS on October 12th - 14th.

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