Wednesday 26 November 2014

Pub staff and their regulars pose for Gathering

Published 17/11/2012 | 05:00

THIRSTY after a long day grazing in his field, Geansi the cow sidled up to the bar and sipped on a pint of plain.

Not to be outdone by his bovine drinking buddy, Candy the goat also took a few sips of the black stuff as regulars serenaded the barnyard pals with a rousing rendition of 'Old MacDonald'.

The real life "party animals" – courtesy of farmer Gus Martyn (51) and his wife Olive from Dunderry, Trim, Co Meath – were among a hundred regulars in fancy dress and GAA attire who gathered outside the iconic Palace Bar in Dublin's Fleet Street.

They were there for a group photograph that will be made into a postcard to highlight the capital and one of its favourite watering holes to help promote The Gathering tourism initiative. Some 5,000 postcards will be printed up and shipped off to Irish pubs around the world to promote The Gathering 2013 – a Failte Ireland initiative to encourage overseas tourists to take part in a series of local events and festivals celebrating Irish culture, history and genealogy next year.

Publican Willie Aherne (37), whose grandfather Bill Aherne bought the circa-1823 pub in 1946, said his postcard initiative is aimed at encouraging tourists to visit here next year while promoting his pub and other local attractions.

The pub has a long literary history and was a haunt of Brendan Behan, Patrick Kavanagh and others while Nobel Laureate poet Seamus Heaney and the late writer Con Houlihan were also known to pop in for a drink, he said.

Regulars, including Lorraine Doyle (39), from Artane, north Dublin, were more than happy to take part in the unusual photocall that brought Dublin's Temple Bar to a standstill last night. "I've been coming here for over 13 years. It's like a family pub in the middle of the city," she said.

Masquerading as Welsh comedian and magician Tommy Cooper, Robert Craughwell (55), from Dublin donned the comic's trademark fez for the cause.

"They look after you here," he said.

Irish Independent

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