Onlookers to be banned from visit venues

PEOPLE hoping to see Britain’s Queen Elizabeth during her royal visit are set to be disappointed as strict security measures has meant onlookers will be banned from all venues to be visited by the British monarch.

Fears of an attack on the queen by dissident republican groups has ensured gardaí have restricted access to all locations on the official four-day State itinerary to individuals vetted by security personnel.

Spectators congregating at venues to be visited by the queen will be kept well back from all access points, according to security sources.

The queen is to travel in a convoy of limousines with darkened windows for security reasons.

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore said he believed citizens would understand that any inconvenience they would suffer as a result of the security operation was necessary to ensure the success of the visit and to maximise its benefits for Ireland.

Protests are also scheduled to take place today by groups including Éirigí and the Irish Anti War Movement, while the Justice for the Forgotten organisation will stage a wreath-laying ceremony to mark the 37th anniversary of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings.

The city’s north and south quays will be closed to traffic between O’Connell Bridge and Heuston Station from 12.30pm to 6pm today.

There will also be a series of rolling closures and traffic calming measures on approach roads to the city including the M50 and N7.

O’Connell Street and Parnell Street will be closed all day due to the queen’s visit to the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Square.

The event is also likely to cause disruption to pregnant women attending the nearby Rotunda Hospital. Some 500 appointments at the maternity hospital’s ante-natal clinic have been cancelled because of the visit.

The public have been urged to use public transport to access the city centre for the remainder of the week.

Dublin Bus said there will be diversions and possible delays to a large number of routes that normally operate in the city centre until next Friday. Passengers are advised to check the Dublin Bus website or the information line on 01-8734222 for regular updates.

Services on the Luas red line will operate between Tallaght and Blackhorse only from 1pm to 5.15pm today, while the Abbey Street stop will be closed for most of the day.

There will be further restrictions on the line tomorrow with services only running between Tallaght and Blackhorse from 8.25am until 4.25pm.

Bus Éireann said there will be alternative routings on some services.

Irish Rail said there will be some suspensions of services between Connolly and Pearse tomorrow, and delays to Maynooth line services.

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