Ticketing rules for live music and nightclubs ‘a disaster’, industry body says

ireland
Ticketing Rules For Live Music And Nightclubs ‘A Disaster’, Industry Body Says Ticketing Rules For Live Music And Nightclubs ‘A Disaster’, Industry Body Says
Tramline Nightclub in Dublin, © PA Wire/PA Images
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By Jonathan McCambridge, PA

New ticketing rules for live music and late-night hospitality in Ireland are a “disaster”, according to industry representatives.

The Licensed Vintners Association (LVA) said the Government process to reopen the sector had become “Keystone Cops meets Father Ted stuff”.

All nightclub events must be ticketed from next week, according to Government guidelines published on Friday evening.

People outside Copper Face Jack’s nightclub in Dublin (Garrett White/PA)

Hours before people were due to crowd back into nightclubs, the guidelines said that alongside a Covid-19 certificate and photographic ID, anyone attending a nightclub will need to have bought a ticket in advance.

Free ticketing will be permitted.

The LVA said it told Government officials at a briefing on Friday evening that the requirements were “completely unmanageable”.

The association said while the term “in advance” is still to be officially defined, it was made clear this would be a minimum of 24 hours and potentially up to 72 hours.

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The trade group said customers attending an early evening music session in a pub would also have to get tickets in advance.

Donall O’Keeffe, chief executive of the LVA, said: “We can’t believe that this is being proposed by Government.

 

“As we made clear at the meeting this is completely unworkable. It is a disaster for late bars, nightclubs and musicians. It simply won’t be possible to put such a system in place, it contradicts the very nature of social activity in Ireland.

“Do they know anything about the late-night economy?

“If the Government goes ahead with these requirements then ad hoc late-night socialising will not be possible. It could also have a devastating impact on DJs and live performers as most pubs simply won’t put on such entertainment.

“The very fact that this bombshell was dropped on the trade at 6.30pm on the very evening they reopen after 585 days of closure shows how appalling the Government planning for our reopening has been.

“The Government process to reopen our sector has become Keystone Cops meets Father Ted stuff.”

The tickets will be issued digitally on mobile phones and scanned at the door where customers will also have to show their ID and Digital Covid Certificate.

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Regulations legally underpinning the rules will be published next week.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the Government is concerned about the trajectory of Covid-19 heading into the winter months (Brian Lawless/PA)

Speaking on Friday, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the Government is concerned about the trajectory of Covid-19 heading into the winter months.

Mr Martin said the country is beginning to witness the “seasonal backdrop” to the disease.

Many virologists have suggested that Covid-19, like influenza, peaks in the colder winter months.

The Taoiseach called for a “collective effort” from the public to remain cautious in the weeks and months ahead.

He said: “As we go into the winter, we are worried and we are concerned in terms of the trajectory of the disease.”

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