Rueful hurling fans left roofless

WHEN it rains, it pours - particularly where disgruntled Wexford hurling fans are concerned.

Hundreds of hurling supporters returning from Croke Park on Sunday night had hoped to lift their spirits with a live gig at a landmark pub once owned by the renowned Rackard hurling family.

But lightning did strike twice on Sunday and instead of raising the roof in celebration, a torrential downpour brought down plasterboard on part of the ceiling in the function room of the Rackards pub in Kilane, Enniscorthy. It forced the new owners to cancel a live gig with entertainer Kieran McGilligan.

“We had a terrible downpour at about 9.05pm, just as we opened the function room,” manager Gareth O’Brien said. “The roof is slanted and the gutters filled up and flooded into the attic. The plasterboard soaked through and about a four foot section above one of our balconies came down.”

If the incident had occurred an hour or two later, the hall would have been packed and the fallout could have been a lot greater, he said.

“We closed the place because of the potential risk to other parts of the structure. No wood or steel came down, just the plaster board. But we couldn’t take a chance,” he said.

“A lot of people were disappointed and we refunded them. We had expected around 200 people on the night. But we put the best side out and we had a great sing song in the bar. It lifted people’s spirits on what was a tough day all-round.”

The function room will remain closed for up to a fortnight for repair work. A gig featuring Paddy O’Brien has been cancelled on next Sunday night.

“It’s a disappointment to everyone who had hoped to be here on Sunday night after the disappointment in Croke Park. But we had a great auld night and we will make up for it again.”

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