AT LEAST three pubs in Lahinch are not allowing stag parties any more, Bill Slattery claimed at this week’s meeting of the Clare Joint Policing Committee.
Just days away from the June Bank Holiday weekend he said he was pleading that a couple of Gardai be provided to Lahinch for the hours between 7pm and 3am on Bank Holiday weekends over the summer.
“People are afraid to drive through the area at that hour,” he claimed.
Mr Slattery said that at the moment Ennistymon Garda Station is closed at night time and if there is anti-social behaviour, Gardai have to bring those involved to Kilrush.
Speaking afterwards Mr Slattery said that many young visitors to Lahinch have been noticeably wilder since restrictions ended, and there has been an absence of Gardai at nigh time.
“Since the restrictions were lifted there seems to be a different mindset among the stag parties that are coming into Lahinch, they’re coming in large groups of 18-20 plus and when they have drink taken they’re hard to patrol. When they come out on the street there are no police there.”
He said that a Garda presence would help the situation.
“The presence of a guard on the street makes an awful difference. They weren’t needed during Covid and before that things weren’t as bad in Lahinch as they seem to be getting now.”
While several local pubs don’t want the business of stag parties, some of them still come.
“Some of the pubs now have signs in the windows saying that stag parties are not welcome. For some reason they are still coming and the message hasn’t come across to them that they are not welcome in Lahinch now.
“It’s difficult to enforce it, when they come into the village they are often well inebriated and the publicans have no choice but to refuse them.”
He said that Chief Superintendent Sean Colleran had said he would provide greater resources to areas like Lahinch over the summer, and he was hopeful the situation will improve.
Concluding, Mr Slattery said that keeping the Garda station open for longer in Ennistymon would be positive.
“The main thing here is that the Garda barracks in Ennistymon is only open from 9am to 1pm and again from 5pm to 9pm. If a squad car is called to Ballyvaughan or somewhere their presence is not seen.”