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This wasn't in The Script - paramedic hits out at 'deeply unfair' ticket grab for health workers' gig

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Danny O'Donoghue of The Script

Danny O'Donoghue of The Script

Danny O'Donoghue of The Script

A frontline HSE worker, who is currently in self-isolation with suspected Covid-19, has criticised the method used to allocate tickets for a free concert headlined by The Script as "deeply unfair".

Paramedic Ciaran O'Connor says he believes scores of people not working for the HSE took advantage of the goodwill gesture and snapped up passes for the complementary gigs.

"This just seems such an injustice to all of us, when we are already struggling to keep our spirits high," he said.

The band are laying on two gigs at the 3Arena next February 8 and 9 for HSE and NHS staff to thank them for their work during the pandemic.

All 24,000 tickets for the shows, which are for everyone from porters to cleaners and ambulance workers, as well as frontline staff, were snapped up within 30 minutes.

However, Mr O'Connor, who has worked with the National Ambulance Service for 10 years, was left disappointed after several unsuccessful attempts to secure a ticket.

He said nobody he works with in the HSE managed to get a ticket.

Mr O'Connor then went on social media and was "shocked" to see people that he knows don't work for the HSE bragging about nabbing tickets for the concerts.

Promoters MCD said ticket holders must bring their valid staff ID to the show as stringent checks will be in operation. All tickets must carry the name of the person who made the booking and that must match the identity card.

However, Mr O'Connor fears that anyone who acquired tickets under false pretences will simply be refused entry - and their tickets will be wasted.

Annoyed

"I don't get annoyed easily, but The Script are after putting on these concerts, specifically for frontline staff and nobody I know got tickets," he said.

"People just see something going for free and they say, 'I'll chance my arm with this'. I couldn't get any tickets, it was so frustrating. Then I logged on to Facebook and I saw people who I know for a fact don't work for the HSE, saying how they got their hands on these tickets.

"I'm not saying I think that I'm a hero and I deserve them more than anyone else, but I think there should have been a better system in operation to make sure they were going to genuine HSE staff."

MCD insisted it had found "no evidence" that any tickets were issued to individuals not eligible to attend and said it was always going to be a "lottery" for passes.