Tuesday 17 September 2019

City's New Year's Eve gig moving to 3Arena due to work on Luas

The Coronas (Danny O'Reilly, Conor Egan, Graham Knox, Dave McPhillips)
The Coronas (Danny O'Reilly, Conor Egan, Graham Knox, Dave McPhillips)
Claire Murphy

Claire Murphy

DUBLIN City Council has moved the New Year's Eve concert away from College Green for the first time since the city festival began - due to Luas construction work.

The Countdown Concert will now take place in the 3Arena for the first time since the New Year Festival began in 2011.

The Herald last month learned that the festival was potentially moving due to Luas construction work on Dame Street. However, Dublin City Council (DCC) denied it had plans to do so at the time.

This week it was announced the gig will be held at the Docklands venue - headlined by rockers The Coronas, with special guests DJ Fatboy Slim and singer Ryan Sheridan.

A spokesperson for DCC said that discussions had been taking place with event management company Holohan Leisure and promoters MCD "in recent weeks".

"The NYF Dublin Countdown Concert will take place in the 3Arena on December 31," the representative said.

"The site at College Green used for the concert in recent years is not available this year due to the impact of the Luas Cross City construction works.

"Discussions have been taking place with Holohan Leisure and MCD in recent weeks and it has been agreed that the most suitable alternative for 2015 is the 3Arena."

Cllr Mannix Flynn said that it was disappointing that the city celebration has moved from the central, historic location.

"Putting this event on in the 3Arena and then saying it is some sort of State celebration or a city celebration is very odd," he said. "It should be somewhere that the whole city can enjoy.

"Also, given the fact that it is 2016, you would imagine that they would have an enormous event. It is about celebrating the significant events that changed the course of Irish history.

"Surely the city council can provide an appropriate celebration for the New Year 2016," he added.

DCC said that although €100,000 of taxpayers' money is provided to fund the general NYE Festival via Failte Ireland, these funds are specifically provided for free-to-public events or free-charging cultural attractions. "Dublin City Council has no involvement in funding the Countdown Concert," a statement added.

The first New Year festival for the capital was rolled out by then Tourism Minister Leo Varadkar in December 2011.

Around 10,000 revellers enjoyed the concert at College Green featuring performances from The Coronas, Paul Brady, Damien Dempsey, Bressie and Riverdance.

The concert to welcome in 2012 cost members of the public €10. This year, early bird tickets cost from €34.50.


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