Fáilte Ireland updates advice on outdoor gatherings and live music after Zappone controversy


FÁILTE IRELAND Updated its guidelines for outdoor events following advice from the Attorney General.

Earlier this week, AG Paul Gallagher informed the government that up to 200 people can attend outdoor events and gatherings.

A statement released by the government noted today: “The guidelines have also been updated to allow live music and other outdoor performances at hospitality facilities, subject to any guidelines from relevant public health. “

Fáilte Ireland recommendations now state, “The overall capacity will depend on the size of the outdoor event area where customers will be seated. The current capacity in August 2021 is a maximum of 200. “

When organizing outdoor events, the venue management “is responsible for minimizing the number of arrival and departure points for clients.”

The guidelines state the following:

  • Live music and performances are permitted at outdoor venues, subject to compliance with all relevant COVID-19 guidelines. Please note that the performance area must be a minimum of 2 meters from clients.
  • Several tables can be reserved in an outdoor area.
  • Mixing between tables is not allowed.
  • The premises must be vacated from all customers before 23:30.

The advisory also notes that weddings fall under different regulations and have an upper limit of 100 guests.

Zappone controversy

The government sought Gallagher’s opinion this week amid controversy over an event hosted by former minister Katherine Zappone on the grounds of the Merrion Hotel in Dublin.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar was among 50 guests who attended the outdoor event on July 21.

The government press office on Wednesday released a statement saying that the GA said organized events and rallies could take place for up to 200 people “including social, recreational, sporting, cultural, entertainment or other events. community “.

In a statement, Varadkar said: “I have confirmed in advance directly with [Zappone], and with hotel management on arrival, that the event complied with Covid regulations. I was present for about 45 minutes, spoke briefly to Dr Zappone and listened to his speech before returning to work. The event took place entirely outdoors.

“I am convinced that these regulations were not broken. This case was verified with the Attorney General.

Zappone announced on Wednesday that she would not take on the role of UN Special Envoy for Freedom of Opinion and Expression amid controversy over the role itself and the event she hosted at the Merrion hotel.

The saga sparked a series of criticisms from opposition parties, representatives of industrial groups and religious leaders.

Speaking on RTÉ Prime Time Last night, former chief government whip Seán Kyne said regulations that make the event at the Merrion Hotel legal “came into effect” on July 5. This fell under a statutory instrument that allows gatherings of 200 people outdoors, with a few exceptions, he said.

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Senator Kyne said he “appreciated” that the government’s communication of what was allowed was “very bad, or not happening at all, if you will.”


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