Gardai on alert in Galway as hundreds of students queue for pubs from early morning as part of ‘Donegal Tuesday’
HUNDREDS of students have travelled to Galway city’s pubs for ‘Donegal Tuesday’ – part an unofficial rag week in the city.
Gardai in the city are believed to be on alert following major anti-social disturbances during last year’s rag week.
Images began to circulate on Twitter of large queues outside some city centre pubs as early as 9.30am this morning.
'Donegal Tuesday’ sees students from Co Donegal who attend college in Galway wear their county colours and go to the pub.
There were major disturbances on Eyre Square in the city last year during rag week, with a number of people being arrested.
Gardai also had to break up a number of fights on the streets of the city.
A Facebook page set up for the event encouraged those taking part to drink responsibly.
“Paint Galway town green & gold for the day, have a good one, look after yourselves and your friends and please drink responsibly”, the page said.
Meanwhile an event at a nightclub in the city had to be shut down due to large volumes of people turned up.
At around 11PM gardai were called to the Electric Theatre and Garden venue due to the large crowds outside.
It is believed that there were several swells and at one point the crowd control barrier was knocked down.
A Garda spokesperson told Independent.ie that the decision was made by gardai in conjunction with venue management to call off the event.
The crowd was then dispersed and no injuries were reported or arrests made.
'Rag Week' is not sanctioned by the college or by the Students Union - It was scrapped in 2011 due to the anti-social behaviour it was attracting.
GMIT Student Union president Sam O'Neill condemned promoters running unoffical rag week events as 'irresponsible' - adding that many venues have set up Facebook pages to promote events.
He added that it is a step backward as the Union has been trying to promote a responsible drinking culture.
"The promoters in the town who are running these events are very irresponsible. It's definitely frustrating for the work we've been doing at the Student's Union to try and change the drinking culture."
By Brian O'Reilly