herald

Tuesday 25 July 2017

Bags ban in place as armed gardai patrol Longitude Festival

Strict security measures will be put in place for the festival, according to Supt Peter Duff
Strict security measures will be put in place for the festival, according to Supt Peter Duff

Security will be extra- tight around Marlay Park for the Longitude Festival this weekend, with the strictest regulations ever in place for the sold-out event.

A total of 250 gardai will be drafted in each day to patrol the Rathfarnham event as 35,000 music fans descend on the venue for three days of entertainment.

Like all summer gigs in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Britain, a ban on backpacks and large bags will be in place, with nothing bigger than A4 allowed into the park.

There will be no cloakroom or storage facilities on site.

Worth €40m to the local economy, the festival will be headlined by Stormzy, The Weeknd and Mumford and Sons.

Supt Peter Duff said gardai will be assisted by around 600 stewards in addition to the mounted unit, the dog unit, air support and the Traffic Corps.

The Garda Armed Response Unit and plain clothes officers will also be there.

Searches will be carried out at the entrance, so those attending are being advised to allow extra travel time to reach the southside park.

Supt Duff also said there will be a strict policy with regards to alcohol on the day.

Respect

"If you turn up for the event and you're under the influence of alcohol or any intoxicating substance, a steward or garda may refuse you entry," he said.

"I would like to call on all patrons to respect members of the local community who live and work and use the general area around Marlay Park."

Therese Langan, from Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, said it was an area with a "very high residential population" and they were keen to minimise any negative impacts associated with the concerts on the local community.

"We always get complaints about the concerts, but we have put in place measures to minimise anti-social behaviour," she said.

"The whole focus is about keeping people safe within the venue and also removing some of the negative impacts on the environment."

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