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The Friday View 15/09
Diving into the data from the latest reports from the Gardaí and the City Council, there are music festivals in Glounthane and Glanmire, and Pitch’d Circus and Street Arts Festival is back
Sounds from a public concert hall
Sounds from a Safe Harbour wrapped up this past weekend, and while it once again showcased the city's ability (along with the organisers) to put on great shows, it also underscored, in a big way, the need for a public theatre or concert hall in the city.
In fairness to the organisers, they staged many free gigs across the city over the four days of the music and arts festival, but they were nearly all in commercial, privately-owned venues. How nice would it have been to have Ólafur Arnalds, the Icelandic multi-instrumentalist, play in a public theatre that everyone and anyone could drop by because it was built for that purpose?
If the Event Centre ever gets built, and that’s not a cynical position to take seven years after the sod was turned, it’s unclear how public it will be in terms of free events? Live Nation, the (eventual) operator of the Event Centre, is in the business of selling tickets to its events. If it ever gets off the ground, we’ll have to wait and see how public the 6,000 seater €80 million Cork Event Centre.
Incidentally, Cork City Council Chief Executive Ann Doherty was asked in a council meeting this week for an update on the empty site and the grand plans. Her update was essentially there was no update, and everything was ongoing.
A city of Cork’s size should have a municipal theatre, a beautiful building that we could be proud of and call our own and invite artists and musicians from across the county, country and the world to play in, because we have the talent and the festivals to fill it.
One gripe on Sounds. I did catch a lovely gig in St Luke’s (which is owned by the City Council). However, to those who paid, it lasted 55 minutes and cost €30. Seems like a lot for not a lot of music.
News in brief
City crime stats: Four times a year the Joint Police Committee (JPC) presents an array of crime statistics to the City Council. The latest committee gathering took place earlier this week.
The top-line figures show that property crime is up considerably at 21% compared to 2022, and bear in mind that we still have four months left in the year. Property theft includes crimes such as shoplifting, burglary, and car theft, including attempted robbery
On that last point, the number of recorded incidents of stealing cars is down, from 240 in 2022 to 215 so far this year. However, police also have a separate category, which they call “interfering with a vehicle” which encompasses either trying to steal the vehicle or something from inside it, and that’s up over 42% on last year to 186 incidents in 2023.
At least two gangs in the city have been targeting cars, especially imported cars without an immobiliser, for the past number of years, to steal and joy ride and ultimately to post on social media, especially on TikTok. While there has been talk of setting up a special task force to clamp down on the problem, to date senior Gardai management have not signed off on this idea.
City Council stats: The Gardai weren’t the only ones with stats to hand this week, as the City Council also presented some of their own data in the most recent Council Executive Report. Typically, this includes everything from dereliction to parking fines and much else.
On the topic of dereliction, there are 120 sites on the Derelict Sites Register, which means that the Council can issue a 7% levy on the value of the property. For the year to date, the Council has issued over €1,109,324.00 on those sites. However, they have only collected €84,672 in the third quarter on those levies. A detective it does not take to see that something is clearly not working in the system, and that’s not just in Cork.
The City Council have, however, been having better odds when it comes to littering. Fines issued is up (from 59 to 69) as are fines paid paid (20 to 82) compared with 2022. The Council has also taken more court proceedings (13 to 18) and won a few more (from 12 to 18) too.
As for parking fines, not much has changed: a few streets in the city center—St. Patrick’s St, South Mall, and Grand Parade—see most of the action, with the biggest single offense being the failure to display a valid disc. For the 12 months up to July 2023, parking attendants issued a grand total of 53,120 fines, up from 45,066 in the previous 12 months
Defaulter: Allan Beechinor, who along with his wife Niamh Parker, founded the once hotly-tipped AI firm Altada was back in the news this week when he popped up on the defaulter’s list from Irish Revenue. Earlier in the year, a Garda investigation began on the Cork company which hit the headlines for a variety of reasons. Beechinor and Parker have exited and sold the company which at once stage was being talked of being worth more than €1bn. It was sold for somewhere in the region of €3 to €5 million.
According to Revenue, Beechinor, with an address in Bishopstown, owes €130,365 for under-declaration of income tax. The settlement is made up of €81,054 in taxes, interest of €26,622 and penalties of €22,689.
Out + About
The Clonakilty International Guitar Festival takes over the West Cork town tonight, with performances continuing until next week. Tonight, County Down luthier George Lowden plays in Scoil na mBuachaillí at 7pm. This weekend, The Altered Hours begin their Ireland and UK tour with a show at DeBarra’s on Saturday at 9:30pm, while Dublin native Aoife Nessa Frances takes to the same stage on Sunday night at 7pm. Early next week, on Wednesday, trad singer-songwriter Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin plays DeBarras at 7pm. A very strong billing for one of the highlights of the West Cork music calendar. Full lineup and tickets here.
Time, date, place: 7pm, Friday September 15, Scoil na mBuachaillí, O’Rahilly Street, Clonakilty
9:30pm, Saturday September 16, 7pm, Sunday September 17, 7pm, Wednesday September 20, DeBarras, Pearse Street, Clonakilty.
A kind of blue: Local artists are the focus of an exhibition at the Firkin Crane based around the colour blue. Curated by Dermot Browne, Kind of Blue explores the symbolism of the colour and its associations with melancholy and sadness. The exhibition features works by Nicola Sheehan, Eadaoin Glynn, Liudmila Kalinka and Dermot Browne. The exhibition is ongoing, with an opening night taking place at 6pm on Thursday September 21.
Time, date, place: Thursday September 14 - Saturday November 4, Firkin Crane, John Redmond St., Shandon.
Upstart Festival takes place in Craig’s Field, Glounthaune, on Saturday. Run by the Glounthaune Community Association and curated by the Glounthaune Vinyl Club, there is a particularly strong lineup this year. Belfast post-punk band Junk Drawer headline the festival, with local math-rock band God Alone supporting, along with Pinhole, Kane’s Basement and Any Joy. Intended as a car-free festival, the organisers ask to avoid parking in Glounthaune village, and instead cycle or get the train. The festival site is a ten-minute walk from Glounthaune Train Station, and is located alongside the new East Cork Greenway. Tickets and information here.
Time, date, place: 4pm, Saturday September 16, Craig’s Field, Glounthaune.
Only Your Footprints, another music festival, is taking place on the eastern outskirts of the city, in Glanmire. Located across two stages, the festival has a focus on wellness, art, poetry and nutritious food. Tomorrow, there’s music from Eve Clague and Cara Kursh during the day, while Trá Pháidín and Dankenstoned’s Bongster play late sets along with Limerick rappers Citrus Fresh and Hazey Haze. Sunday is much more mellow, with poetry readings taking place on one of the stages, and music from Fixity. East of the city is where it’s at this weekend! Tickets here.
Time, date, place: 10am, Saturday September 16, and 11am, Sunday September 17, Fairy Hill, Sarsfield Court, Glanmire.
Get composting: Donal O’Leary from Waste Down Composting will be giving a workshop at St Luke’s Community Garden on Sunday morning at 10am. A hands-on and practical workshop, participants will learn about the importance of composting and how to improve soil quality.
Time, date, place: 10am, Sunday September 17, St. Luke’s Community Garden, Ballyhooly Road, St. Luke’s Cross, Cork.
Pitch’d Circus Festival continues this weekend with a number of events around the city. Tomorrow, a number of free walkabouts with three different characters will take place at the Marina Market. One with Dodo the Wandering Hobo, one with A Snail’s Tale, and one with Lorenzo Baronchelli. The first two walkabouts start at 1:45pm, 3pm and 4:15pm, while the third begins at 2pm, 3:15pm and 4:30pm. See the full program here.
Time, date, place: 1:45pm-5pm, Saturday September 16, Marina Market, Centre Park Road, Cork.
What News of Cork? is an ongoing exhibition of cityscapes and poems associated with Cork, by poet Colm Scully and artist John Corkery. Featuring paintings of local streetscapes and a collection of local poetry, the exhibition launched last night at St. Peter’s on North Main Street, and goes on until the 25th of September.
Time, date, place: Thursday September 14 - Monday September 25, St. Peter’s, North Main Street, Cork.
Max Zaska is the latest recipient of the Write Record Perform residency at the Triskel with his band, ZASKA, and as part of it, he will be collaborating with Gemma Dunleavy, shiv, Melina Malone for a premiere of new music, which will be recorded for an audio and video release. More information and tickets here.
Time, date, place: 19:45pm, Saturday September 16, Triskel Arts Centre, Tobin Street, Cork.
This week on T+D:
On Tuesday evening, Pádraig O’Connor went along to the launch of Cork Folk Festival, now in it its 44th edition. The festival kicks off at the end of the month and more than 200 musicians will be playing in venues spread across the city.
That’s it for this week’s Friday View. Any tips, news or events you’d like to share with Tripe+Drisheen, you can contact us via our About page here and via email to email@example.com and on our various social media channels, including Twitter and Instagram where we are posting more stories. We are always happy to speak to people off the record in the first instance, and we will treat your information with confidence and sensitivity. Get in touch. Have a lovely weekend.