Guinness heiress urges charity in these recessionary times

A GUINNESS heiress has called on Irish companies to mirror the brewing family’s spirit and fund hospitals, schools and small businesses hit by the recession.

Joining the 250-year celebrations at St James’s Gate, Jasmine Guinness, 32, the great granddaughter of the last family director, said now was the time for the more fortunate to show their charity.

“It’s a very good reason to go to the pub and raise a pint and raise money for charity as well. Just drive around Dublin and see the parks, hospitals and schools and everything they [the Guinness family] built.

“I think more employers should be like Guinness’s as they were. That’s the legacy, the legacy of charity.”

Guinness has pledged€6 million to help fundlocal community programmes as part of the drinks celebrations.

Over 50 million people took part in a global toast yesterday as Dublin opened its doors in 32 venues to a host of popular bands and musicians.

Internationally acclaimed artists at the party included David Gray and Tom Jones. Other renowned Irish stars included Lisa Hannigan, Republic of Loose and Imelda May.

Attending the main event, Taoiseach Brian Cowen was at first reluctant to indulge in the celebrations. “I can’t stay as long as I’d like unfortunately.... I don’t have the time. Working hard.”

Pressed more, the embattled government leader conceded: “You always have one.”

Up to 2,000 VIPS were guests at the old Dublin brewery, while celebrations were also held further afield in Lagos in Nigeria, Kuala Lumpar in Malaysia and New York.

To mark the time at which Arthur Guinness had secured his 9,000-year lease on the old site, Dublin led a cheer at 17:59 where pints were raised aloft.

But lead star of the night, Tom Jones, had another message for crowds as he entered the brewery. The 69 year old said: “You’ve always gotta be cautious about how much you drink. It shouldn’t interfere with what you have to do.

“It should be a social thing. It’s nice to go to the pubs and have a glass with friends. It’s like everything else, you shouldn’t take it to the extreme because it will get in the way, it will stop you working or what you have to do."


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