Croker residents seeking queen’s support

THE Croke Park Streets Committee has sent a letter to Queen Elizabeth II asking her to speak on its behalf when visiting GAA headquarters next week as part of her state visit to Ireland.

The chairman of the committee, Eamon O’Brien, says he is well aware of the irony of seeking the intercession of a British monarch to help prevent what he alleges is an attempted unjust eviction from the community and handball centre.

In the letter, sent by registered post to Buckingham Palace on Wednesday, O’Brien says that until recently, the GAA would have been unlikely to have extended a warm welcome to a member of the British Royal family, but that now, “your majesty is regarded with deep affection by many in GAA headquarters, unlike their attitude to our local community, and it is in this regard that we hope your majesty may be able to be of some great assistance”.

The letter continues by referring to Croke Park’s annual profits of €58m from events that cause “great inconvenience” to the community and the eviction notice received by the community and handball centre members.

“Your Majesty, we would be very grateful if you could let the Croke Park GAA officials, that you may happen to meet, know that you are aware of our plight and that it would be only right that we be treated with respect and decency,” wrote Mr O’Brien.

On February 14, Páirc an Chrócaigh Teoranta issued the secretary of the centre with a termination notice, followed by a letter 11 days later requesting that members remove all their belongings and vacate the premises.

The notice claimed that the community centre members were in breach of their licensing agreement and had failed to respond appropriately to a notice of failure to comply with the terms and conditions of the licence. This claim has been rejected by Mr O’Brien.

Stadium director Peter McKenna said he had no comment to make.


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