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Wednesday 21 February 2018

TV show reveals how city mayhem on St Patrick's Day captured by CCTV

A shot from TV3 documentary ‘Patrolling Paddy’s’
A shot from TV3 documentary ‘Patrolling Paddy’s’

Ryan Nugent

Up to 1,100 gardaí patrolled the streets of Dublin over the course of St Patrick's Day - the biggest operation of the year for the force, according to a new documentary covering the day in detail.

Given the current security issues worldwide, patrolling national holidays has become more challenging than ever before, the TV3 documentary 'Patrolling Paddy's' explains.

The show looks into the operations involved in keeping public order incidents in the capital to a minimum, including the rolling out of zero-tolerance policy to the public consumption of alcohol.

Operational planning is understood to take a full year, with the first meetings for next year's festivities having taken place on March 18 this year - the day after St Patrick's Day.


A spokeswoman for the programme described the CCTV footage used by gardaí as "Big Brother-esque".

A shot from TV3 documentary ‘Patrolling Paddy’s’
A shot from TV3 documentary ‘Patrolling Paddy’s’

The most prominent areas covered by cameras were the north and south inner city, along with the Temple Bar, Store Street and Pearse Street areas.

However, public-order units patrolled all across the city.

They reached as far as Ballymun, according to the documentary.

Station cells were full, which meant that some offenders needed to be moved to prisons outside of the capital.

"We get to see never-before-seen footage of base camp, the nerve centre of the Garda operation and surveillance on the streets of Dublin as it focuses on one of the biggest events in Europe, March 17," said the spokeswoman.

"The public will be astounded to see how much surveillance there actually is in the city, with how many cameras there are on the streets of Dublin which are observed by gardaí ...very 'Big Brother'-esque.

"We see how they can identify anti-social behaviour with their zero-tolerance policy and swoop on any offenders.

"As their cells get full with offenders, gardaí have to move offenders to prisons outside the city," she added.

The documentary airs on TV3 at 10pm tonight.

Irish Independent

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