Resident group says extra Garth Brooks concerts are 'unacceptable'

Resident group says extra Garth Brooks concerts are 'unacceptable'

RESIDENT GROUPS representing those living close to Croke Park have reacted the news that Garth Brooks is set to play five nights in the stadium next September.

Tickets for two nights went on sale this morning at 8am, but within hours three more dates had been added to meet demand.

He is now set to take to the stage on Friday 10, Saturday 11, Sunday 12, Friday 16 and Saturday 17 September 2022.

Brooks was famously denied a license to play five nights in Croke Park in 2014 by Dublin City Council, leading to the cancellation of all concerts, saying he would only play five or none.

Now, a local residents association has said the planned five nights for next year is "unacceptable".

"The basis for our reasoning is that this was investigated a long time ago by an Bord Pleanála and they placed a cap on special events - three per annum," said PRO for the Clonliffe and Croke Park Area Residents' Association Colm Stephens on Today with Claire Byrne.

"We are prepared to accept three and we feel that is a reasonable compromise, but nothing else has really changed in the circumstances. The stadium is still in the same residential area and we feel this cap should be followed."

He also noted how there is no legal framework for the association or residents to take further action in relation to the matter.

"This seems a little strange to us that the state, in the form of the city council, has made the decision to grant permission for four extra special events above the cap.

"We made our submissions and the majority of them objected to the number of concerts above three."

Mr Stephens said the council has ignored their submissions, which were two thirds in favour and one third against the additional concerts.

"I don't know how people will put up with it, and I think many people will try move out of the area for the fortnight that Garth Brooks is there. Unfortunately it will be during school time.

"I am absolutely considering moving out during that time," he said. "I think we may have to get off site to make room for Garth Brooks to make millions on the back of the Irish people."

Noeleen Blackwell, Independent Chairperson of Croke Park Community Meetings, whose role is to facilitate discussions between residents, Aiken Promotions and Croke Park, said some residents are mainly objecting to the inconvenience that special events in the stadium pose.

"Concerts do bring employment and a buzz to the area, but there is an inconvenience, partly due to really bad behaviour by patrons and partly due to the shear volume of people that attend the events.

"Those are things that Aiken Promotions and Croke Park wanted to engage with to identify how to reduce the level of nuisance."

She said a working group has been set up, that is still open for anyone to join, which will address issues such as anti-social behaviour, parking, traffic and a lack of access to property

"All of these things are to be further thought through. The Gardai will be involved at some stage, as will waste management."

Another group, which represents seven residents associations has said they always knew it was going to be five concerts.

Anthony Kelly, Chairperson of the District Seven Alliance, told Newstalk's Pat Kenny Show:

"We had a meeting last week with Croke Park and it was all put to us that it was going to be five."

Issues with the concerts are moreso related to logistical difficulties as opposed to the concerts themselves.

"It is the traffic management, it is the waste management, it is the security aspects of before and after," he said. "The vast majority of people don't mind Croke Park but they do mind what comes after and the way things are managed. "

He also said of the 126 observations that were submitted in relation to the concerts, 86 of them were against and the rest were for.

"Those who were against were just ignored."