After two years spent dreaming of Dublin’s nightclubs, we are once again enjoying 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 are soon allowed to remain open until 6 am, as part of a huge revision to Ireland’s drinking laws planned by the Department of Justice. The new rules are expected to come into force next year.
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’.
Arts Minister Catherine Martin has sent six advisors to towns and cities across Ireland to run pilot programmes and report back, which really turned the wheels. You may have heard of the IMMA Nights, introduced a few months ago, which is a large cultural event at the Irish Museum of Modern Art and which will run until September.
The overarching aim of changing the drinking laws and introducing more 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’.