Wednesday 21 February 2018

Get rid of city horse fair, says mayor

Colm Kelpie

DUBLIN Lord Mayor Gerry Breen has written to three government ministers urging them to bring forward new laws to scrap the controversial horse fair at Smithfield.

Two men were shot and a third injured with a slash hook during the inner-city Dublin fair earlier this month.

In his letter to Justice Minister Alan Shatter, Enterprise Minister Richard Bruton and Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney, Mr Breen said there were a number of equestrian venues around the country that functioned perfectly well.

"On behalf of the people of Dublin, I ask that you enact legislation so that the horse fair at Smithfield may be extinguished," Mr Breen said.

One man has been charged with possession of a gun in connection with the violence at the fair on March 6.

A safety assessment of the fair published in May 2009 by health and safety experts Eamon O'Boyle and Associates on behalf of Dublin City Council revealed significant risks, with virtually all due to the unsuitability of the venue.

"There are a number of equestrian facilities around the country that function perfectly well because they are properly designed," Mr Breen said.

Irish Independent

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