Organisers paid gardaí nearly €500k to police events in first half of 2019

Organisers paid gardaí nearly €500k to police events in first half of 2019
Rod Stewart performing in Páirc Uí Chaoimh in Cork in May. Picture: Larry Cummins

The gardaí have been paid nearly €500,000 for policing duties at events this year.

The most expensive was a three-day music festival in Co. Westmeath.

The Life Festival event in Mullingar cost €50,000 in policing charges.

Figures released under the show that, in the first half of this year, promoters were billed €470,000 for garda cover at 177 events across the country.

€29,000 was charged for the Ireland-France Six Nations match in the Aviva Stadium in March.

The Forbidden Fruit Festival – a three-day music event in Kilmainham in Dublin last month – set the organisers back €28,000.

The Rod Stewart concert in Páirc Uí Chaoimh in Cork in May cost Aiken Promotions marginally less in Garda cover, at €27,000.

Gardaí charge organisers of big events a contribution towards police-cover.

Leitrim musician and organiser John McCartin claims there should be no charge at all.

"These events do not raise the population of the country," he said.

"All they do is create economic activity and increased revenue."

"I don't see why if we have a police force adequately resourced to police the country from general taxation that there is any need for extra augmented payments from local community festivals and events paying the wages and costs for gardaí policing these events."

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