People take a liking to things in Huelva with the same passion as they sing fandangos, pilot a boat, or drink a good wine. That is the secret of one Andalusians’ best-liked shows – the region is proud of its long list of Andalusian-born bullfighters and bull farmers. Huelva is the cradle of one of the longest dynasties of brave, matadors – the Litris, consisting of Miguel Báez Quintero, El Mequi, José Báez Quintero; Manuel Báez Gómez “El Litri”, Miguel Báez Espuny “El Litri”, and Miguel Báez Espínola “El Litri”. Nevertheless, many other bullfighters, banderilleros, picadors, and novilleros or apprentice bullfighters were also born here, such as the dynasties of the Pirfos – Gregario Leandro Gómez “Mellaíto de Málaga”; Francisco Leandro Gómez “Pirfo I”; Manuel Leandro Gómez “Pirfo II”; José Leandro Muñoz “Pirfo III”, and Francisco Leandro Leyva, “Pirfo IV” – and the Chamacos – Antonio Barrero Morano, Sebastián Barrero Morano, and Antonio Barrero Barrero, all of them nicknamed “Chamaco” – together with Francisco Méndez Rodríguez “Curro Méndez”; Florentino Luque Castilla, Emilio Muñoz Vázquez, Miguel Carrasca López, Juan Barranco Posada, Pablo Gómez Terrón, Santiago Ortiz Trixant, Jesús Vázquez Mendez, Diego Gómez León Laine, Emilio Silvera González, and Francisco Barroso Martín among many others.
Huelva’s liking to bullfighting starts in the countryside – in fact, with the rearing of fighting bulls in the vast pastures of Huelva. Many livestock companies work here, such as Concha y Sierra, Hijos de Doña Celestina Cuadri Vides, Don Tomás Prieto de la Cal, Toros de Gerardo Ortega, “Villamarta”; Carmen Barrero Rodríguez, Guadiamar, La Dehesilla, Manuel Ángel Millares, Torremilla, El Romeral, José Ramos Huelva, Ignacio Palacios, De Montelolivo, José Carranza, Hermanos Santa Cruz, Viuda de Diego Garrido, Hermanos Domínguez Camacho, Arucci, Manuel González Cabello, José González Cabello, Socorro Sánchez-Dalp, González Sánchez-Dalp, Albareal, Miguel Báez Espuny, “El Litri”; Hermanos Rubio Martínez, and José Luis Pereda, among many others.
The Bullring of La Merced was opened in 1968 by Miguel Báez Espuny, “El Litri”; Manuel Benítez, “El Cordobés”, and Ángel Teruel, who fought against bulls from Hijos de Doña Celestina Cuadri Vides. The bullring is located at the end of Gravina Street, by the railway which leads to the town of Gibraleón, and can seat 7,000 people in three floors. This bullring was built over the first Bullring of Huelva, inaugurated in 1902 by Miguel Báez Quintero, “El Litri” and Rafael González “Machaquito” with bulls from the Marqués de Saltillo Livestock Company, from which the present Victorino Martín Livestock Company comes. That first bullring could seat 6,000 people, had two floors, and a 45-metre-long diameter. Unfortunately, the place was abandoned for a long time until its present impresario, Mr. José Luis Pereda reopened it on 29 July 1984 with a bullfight starring Miguel Báez Espuny, “El Litri” – who reappeared for the occasion –, Curro Romero, and Pepe Luis Vázquez Silva against bulls from the Jandilla Livestock Company. Since that day on, the greatest bullfighting legends have fought here.
Huelva is one of the Spanish provinces with the biggest number of towns and villages having their own bullrings after Madrid, Seville, Valencia, Córdoba, and Cadiz.
Bullfighting Clubs of Huelva
Tertulia taurina Miguel Báez Litri 79 Escultora Miss Whitney Avenue 21003 Huelva +34 959 27 15 92 email@example.com
The Former Bullring of Huelva
The Ancient Bullring was located where the present one is today – that is, at the end of Gravina Street, by the railway which leads to the town of Gibraleón. That first bullring could seat 6,000 people, had two floors, and a 45-metre-long diameter. The place was big enough for the performance of bullfights. At the end of the 19th century, matador Miguel Báez Quintero’s fame made bullfights much better-liked by the people in Huelva. The construction of the new bullring started on February 1902. It was inaugurated on 5 September that same year with a bullfight starring El Litri and Machaquito against animals from Marqués de Saltillo.
This bullring had approximately the same capacity as before. However, only its structure remained with the passing of time, and the building was abandoned for a long time. Nevertheless, the district of Vera Larga de Merced missed those typical afternoons in the bullring. It was then when the bullring was rebuilt – while keeping its original, centenary structure – by José Luis Pereda, the man who has been its owner and impresario until recently. He took the bullring back to its splendour age, and the afternoons seeing bullfights came back to the city. The bullring was re-inaugurated on 29 July 1984 with a bullfight starring Miguel Báez Espuny, “El Litri” – who reappeared for the occasion –, Curro Romero, and Pepe Luis Vázquez Silva against bulls from the Jandilla Livestock Company. The Bullring of La Merced has witnessed glorious moments of bullfighting and the participation of great figures from all times. The place belongs in a society which has given birth to legendary bullfighters. Since 1984 on, the Vega Larga de Merced has recovered the bullfighting afternoons. Despite the passing of time, this ancient and new Bullring has always had a perennial spectator – the Cabezo del Conquero, which is as well-known to visitors as that sea which opened a path to a new continent.
2 Cristóbal Colón Avenue 21002 Huelva
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