Bandon Music Festival marred by lewd antics

There were almost a dozen arrests in a West Cork town last weekend as its annual music festival coincided with complaints of teenage drunkenness and lewd behaviour.

One complainant has said she will no longer attend the Bandon Music Festival having witnessed a number of couples having sex in full view of the public.

Eleven people, mostly juveniles, were arrested for drunkenness and public order offences in Bandon last weekend according to the Southern Star, and reports from the town during the festival prompted calls to the Neil Prendeville Show on Red FM yesterday.

One caller, identified only as Siobhán, said she was driving through Bandon on Saturday night and described what she witnessed as an ‘absolute disgrace’.

“The amount of teenagers, I’d say aged 16, 17 years of age, walking the streets, some of them hanging over walls getting sick — it was an absolute disgrace. A fight broke out on the south of the Main St so I avoided that area. The drinking is absolutely ridiculous, where they’re getting it I don’t know,” she said.

Another caller, Sinéad, said she stopped attending the festival after she witnessed young couples having sex.

“I’ve been going since I was a young age myself, and it was always a great festival, it was a festival for anybody; families, young people, it was great. But last year, we saw things you do not want to see so that’s why I didn’t go this year. I saw lots of sex, and it wasn’t me doing it. Really it was terrible.

“It was scary. We saw five or six couples lined up against a wall just at it. Me and my husband were looking at them going ‘Oh my God’.”

“When did it become acceptable to be having sex outside in front of people?” she said.

She told Mr Prendeville that the couples were teenagers, and that she told one couple that she thought they were a disgrace.

“I was a teenager myself and look, you’re full of hormones and emotions but it’s not normal to have sex outdoors,” she said.

The caller said the issue is not unique to Bandon, and that many teenagers attending the festival came from outside the town.

“It’s not just the Bandon Music Festival, this probably happens everywhere and it’s not just Bandon people, I want to point that out because there were buses coming in from everywhere.

“So these teenagers were getting on buses from the whole county and coming to our town, so it’s not just Bandon people, I don’t want people thinking that we are like that. It’s kids coming from outside coming into our town to do it, to drink and do whatever.”

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