Brooks fiasco a 'bomb blast' to Ireland

Published Tuesday, 15 July 2014
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Dublin Lord Mayor Christy Burke has described the axing of the five sell-out Garth Brooks concerts which sold 400,000 tickets, as a "bomb blast" for both Dublin and the Irish economy.

On Monday evening the country star finally ended all hope of the concerts going ahead at the end of the month following weeks of uncertainty.

Dublin City Council granted a licence for three shows at Croke Park, but ruled two could not go-ahead.

It followed after complaints from residents about the number of concerts held in the GAA stadium.

The GAA had struck a deal during the construction of the 82,000 seater-stadium to limit the amount of concerts to just three a year, which was reached when the group One Direction performed earlier this year.

Despite repeated attempts to broker a deal among all parties, which included a compromise offer of allowing the performer to play matinee shows to accommodate all the concerts, no agreement could be reached.

Brooks had said that he would not choose which shows to perform saying it was "all or nothing".

The city's businesses have said the cancellation is expected to cost them around €50m, and the Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the decision could leave a quarter of a billion Euro hole in the country's economy.

His decision was a bomb blast to the city and the country and it is with great regret they have been cancelled.

Dublin Lord Mayor Christy Burke

Dublin's Lord Mayor Christy Burke said the decision by Brooks and his promoter was devastating.

He said: "I believe everyone in government, local government, the community and business people all tried.

"Everyone had an interest in Garth Brooks playing in Dublin.

"But the ball was purely in the court of Mr Brooks' management team."

Meanwhile, the Oireachtas Transport Committee has met to discuss the situation to examine how it came about and what lessons can be learned.

Chief executive of Dublin City Council Owen Keegan appeared before the committee on Tuesday morning and said Garth Brooks and organiser Aiken promotions had to face the consequences of the debacle.

He said: "Nothing that has occurred since the decision [to allow three shows] was made has changed my opinion that it was appropriate, balanced and reasonable.

"I very much regret the decision of Garth Brooks/Aiken Promotions, not to hold the three permitted concerts and to examine options proposed by the city council in relation to the two concerts that were not permitted.

"This was their decision and they must accept the consequences."

Both the GAA and Aiken Promotions are expected before the committee on Wednesday.

TicketMaster has said the ticket refund process will begin on Thursday at 9am.

© UTV News
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48 Comments
David in magherafelt wrote (97 days ago):
I don't want to go near Garth Brooks or croke park at all anymore. I have tickets for this concert on the Saturday but even if they did get a last minute change I won't go and will never go to either the venue or to the 'stars' shows ever again.
joe in craigavon wrote (98 days ago):
would just like to remind people that once upon a time ago we could have had a multi purpose all seater arena built at the maze longkesh site. now just think of the major acts we could have staged at such a venue the money to the to local people and we wouldnt have to always travel to dublin. so thank the unionist politicans the bobby sands arena was never built and belfast people because they want everything on their doorstep. if we had our own national stadium we may have been able to offer a soloution to garth .
Belfast in Belfast wrote (98 days ago):
Garth dosent think much of his fans if he wont play the 3 shows or all as proposed by the council instead cancel all and none of the fans get to see him.
AK in Coleraine wrote (98 days ago):
Let's stop playing the blame game. 3 concerts originally which GB accepted, he pulled the plug. Read tickets, it states "subject to licence" ..... should never have been sold under that condition and not approved.
charlie in louth wrote (98 days ago):
Actually its a great result for Ireland. Now all those millions of euro's bound for Mr Brooks foreign bank accounts will stay and be spent on these shores helping to support and grow local economies and driving this wee country forward. Its onward and upward for us Garth
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