Monday 29 December 2014

Gaiety pleads with council over drug addicts in laneway

Cormac Murphy

Published 12/05/2014 | 15:58

Friday 09 May 2014. Tangier Lane, off Grafton Street Dublin 2. Gaiety Theatre Stage Door.
Laneway at side of Gaiety Theatre. Doug O'Connor

THE Gaiety Theatre has pleaded with the council for a laneway frequented by drug addicts to be closed.

Tangier Lane - under the charge of Dublin City Council - is located between Dunnes Stores and the Disney Store at the top of Grafton Street. It leads to the Gaiety’s stage door.

The local authority had previously agreed to its closure but came up against difficulties when it came to removing the public right of way.

However, Gaiety manager Alan McQuillan said the situation has recently deteriorated.

“It’s getting worse. They [addicts] come down here on a regular basis shooting up. They come down by the stage door so they’re far away from Grafton Street. Once they’re halfway down they shoot up and leave the needles there. It happens almost every day,” Mr McQuillan said.

“Actors come in that way. When we have a children’s show you could have hundreds of kids going that way.”

The Gaiety wants to see a temporary barrier in place until the right-of-way issue is resolved. Mr McQuillan said a member of their technical staff “nearly stepped on a needle”.

“He was walking out and he almost stood on it. It is just so dangerous,” he said.

“We had Riverdance on for the summer and all the young girls coming in were wearing flat shoes and sandals. The fear is one of them would stand on one of the needles.”

The council had not replied to a request for a comment at the time of writing.

In a previous report, the local authority noted that the “area is prone to regular anti-social behaviour and is routinely littered with needles”.

Meanwhile, Mr McQuillan said the Gaiety is also experiencing problems with beggars.

“There is a huge problem with beggars at night. Coming up to show time, they will be sitting at the main entrance with dogs,” he said.

“We get a huge amount of complaints from patrons.

“They feel nervous and intimidated. If the show is starting at 8pm, the beggars will be there from 7pm sitting outside,” he added.

Irish Independent

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