It has just today been announced that the Government are founding a long overdue Night-Time Economy Taskforce, which will take on the responsibility of both saving, and rebuilding the night time economy.
This comes after years of pressure and persistence from the Give Us The Night campaign and notably Sunil Sharpe & Robbie Kitt. The establishment of such a taskforce could see far more emphasis and resources put into both rebuilding and maintaining Irish nightlife, which in recent years has suffered massively at the hands of club closures, developers and a lack of priority put on nightlife culture, activities and economy.
The announcement today came from Catherine Martin, who is the Minister for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht. When making the announcement, she added “This Taskforce will be a dynamic forum to seek innovative solutions to the challenges the industry faces” – Martin
After the announcement, Minister Martin then gave more insight and detail as to what’s to come and what this taskforce will look at and be responsible for.
“The establishment of a Night-Time Economy Taskforce is a key commitment in the Programme for Government and I am delighted that my Department will be leading and driving this initiative. The importance of working collaboratively with all relevant partners including key Government Departments and Agencies cannot be overstated. I want creative thinking and innovative solutions to the challenges facing the night-time economy and I want every opportunity explored and maximised. I am particularly pleased that Sunil Sharpe of Give us the Night has agreed to participate in the Task Force, as well as the Lord Mayors of Dublin and Cork cities, who have already overseen much work in this area. It is anticipated that Give us the Night and the two Local Authorities will give a presentation on their vision, and their work to date at the first meeting of the Taskforce.”
Minister Martin also said: “I am also asking the Taskforce to conduct an intensive stakeholder engagement process with all relevant sectors and interested parties who have a significant role in the night-time economy to ensure that all views and ideas are considered by the Taskforce. While it won’t be possible to have every interested party on the Taskforce, they can be sure that their views will be heard and will be an important part of the process.”
She continued: “Covid-19 has severely restricted social gatherings and has been detrimental to the night time economy and culture of our cities, towns and villages. However, as the economy opens up in the coming months (dependent on the current health advice), the industry needs to be ready to bounce back and to have as few obstacles as possible to develop and grow. This Taskforce will be well placed to look at all the challenges facing the development of a vibrant night time culture and economy such as regulations, licencing laws, transport, and diversity of cultural activities among other issues.”
This commitment follows work already carried out in relation to this project in 2019 and earlier this year. The Taskforce will be chaired by the Department of Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht and will meet in the coming weeks. It is expected to deliver a report with policy recommendations to the Minister within six months of this first meeting.
Source – CHG.GOV.ie.
We’ve been following, sharing updates and working with Give Us The Night for some time on these matters, and the work they put into saving and improving Irish nightlife is absolutely invaluable, make sure to check out their pages, mandate and socials to stay up to date and help support the movement.
This establishment could be the turning point in Irish nightlife and may lead to protection of our creative spaces, and potentially a licensing and operating hours reform, which would see Ireland join Europe in more progressive and captivating clubbing.