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Councillor calling for a ban on all Phoenix Park gigs until a full review

A LOCAL councillor has called for an end to concerts in the Phoenix Park following last weekend's shocking scenes of violence and crime.

Cllr Mary Fitzpatrick said that until a review of the weekend's mayhem is carried out, there should be no more gigs in the Dublin 7 venue.

Nine people were stabbed at the event and the deaths of two concert goers are under investigation as the fallout continues following the Swedish House Mafia event attended by 45,000 people.

Calls have been made for the banning of anymore new licences for open air concerts in Dublin until the completion of a full investigation into what went wrong at Saturday's chaotic event in the Phoenix Park.

Cllr Mary Fitzpatrick said security measures were nothing near the level required and the event proved to be "a recipe for disaster."

However, well-placed sources within MCD are adamant that Phoenix Park remains an "ideal venue."

While there are no more large concerts under the remit of Denis Desmond's entertainment planned for the remainder of the year, future events are being considered.

"There is no intention of abandoning Phoenix Park. In so many ways it's a great location -- there is so much space and it is located in the centre of the city.

"Of course there were serious issues there that have to be immediately addressed but that doesn't mean 'let's forget Phoenix Park'," a source explained.



Disastrous

However, Cllr Fitzpatrick said she will demand a halt to new concert licences until all the circumstances surrounding the disastrous event are fully examined, including security and organisation matters.

The council's policing committee was not scheduled to meet for two months but it will be seeking submissions on the chaotic event from the event organisers MCD, the Office of Public Works, the council, and the gardai.

Cllr Fitzpatrick spoke today of the "real sense of danger" at the concert and how there had been "a real edge" to the event as it got underway. The same level of trouble was not experienced at events in the park on Thursday and Sunday, she said.

She said she had been bombarded with calls from angry local residents in the past 48 hours.

"They have been complaining about cars pulling up, boots being opened that were full of alcohol and people discarding their clothes all around.

"Locals are very upset at what happened."

She said given the large open space of the park and "the demographic" of the people attending, it was "a recipe for disaster."

Speaking on RTE's Morning Ireland today, she said it was clear that the event should have been "better managed."

"Clearly there wasn't enough security... nothing near the level of security required," she said.

"We have to ensure this can never happen again."

She said that as a society, it must be made clear that what happened at the concert was "unacceptable behaviour."

MCD sources are of the view that the venue is ideal and that the matter of policing in the wide area of the park is a matter that needs to be addressed.

"There are issues we can all learn from this, but the fact that these people were even allowed near the park in the first place is one for the Gardai," said a source.

"Much of the stuff took place outside of the venue itself."

hnews@herald.ie