After two years spent dreaming of Dublin’s nightclubs, we can finally enjoy them, but only until around 2.30 am when most nightclubs have to stop serving alcohol. So what happens if you’re celebrating something big, or staying out until the early hours is just your way of saying hello to the weekend?
Well, nightclubs could soon be allowed to remain open until 6 am, as part of a huge revision to Ireland’s drinking laws planned by the Department of Justice. Plus, Dubliners can look forward to more cultural events taking place late into the night at important institutions such as the National Concert Hall.
The work being done to change the laws around drinking laws is nothing new. In April Tánaiste Leo Varadkar told the Project Arts Centre that he had been speaking with Justice Minister Helen McEntee about the matter. He went on to say, ‘it won’t be a matter of months, but it can be done this year’.
Now Arts Minister Catherine Martin has sent six advisors to towns and cities across Ireland to run pilot programmes and report back, so the wheel is really turning now. You may have heard of the new IMMA Nights, which is a large cultural event that has been running for a couple of weeks now at the Irish Museum of Modern Art and which will run until September.
The National Concert Hall plans to run a new festival too, where you can expect to hear electronic music. The overarching aim of changing the drinking laws and introducing these large cultural events is to enhance the nighttime economy in Ireland, reportedly.
Some may worry about the implications of extended opening hours, but back in 2019, Leo Varadkar tried to reassure the country, saying that ‘it doesn’t lead to public order offences or increased levels of public order offences’.