Girls Aloud gig may scupper election count

Votes cast in central Dublin constituencies could be counted in the Point Depot for the first time ever and may clash with a Girls Aloud concert, it emerged today.

Votes cast in central Dublin constituencies could be counted in the Point Depot for the first time ever and may clash with a Girls Aloud concert, it emerged today.

The traditional RDS venue may not be available as a count centre for polling day depending on which date the Taoiseach chooses.

Votes cast in Dublin Central, Dublin North Central, Dublin South Central, Dublin South East and Dublin North West and Dublin North East have been counted in the Ballsbridge facility in several recent general elections and European polls.

The office of the Dublin City Returning Officer said today that some of the speculated dates for the poll may clash with bookings at the RDS, and other venues are being considered.

"Like everybody else, we are waiting for the nod from the Taoiseach and then we will know where we stand with a venue," a spokesman added.

The most speculated-upon dates for the election are May 17, 24 and 31.

If the election is held on Thursday, May 31, counting on the following day, Friday, June 1 will clash with a Girls Aloud concert scheduled for that evening.

The Point is Ireland's premier indoor music venue with a capacity of up to 8,500 people.

It recently played host to P Diddy and Snoop Dogg and upcoming gigs feature Ozzy Osbourne and Meat Loaf.

Votes cast in the six Dublin County constituencies will be counted in separate centres in Portmarnock (North), Lucan (Mid-West), Coolmine (West), Tallaght (South West), Ballinteer (South) and Loughlinstown (Dun Laoghaire).

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