GAA to pay €500,000 to Croke Park community

Friday 27 June 2014 22.08
Garth Brooks will play five nights in a row this July
Garth Brooks will play five nights in a row this July

A mediation process aimed at resolving a dispute over next month's Garth Brooks concerts has recommended that in future Croke Park should not host concerts on four or five consecutive nights.

Labour Relations Commission Chief Executive Kieran Mulvey's report also recommends a Garth Brooks legacy fund of €500,000 for the local community.

GAA Director General Páraic Duffy has said the GAA would pay the money recommended under the fund.

Mr Mulvey's report follows meetings with residents, the GAA and concert promoters.

Croke Park is hosting a total of eight concerts this year, including five consecutive nights this July by Garth Brooks.

Mr Mulvey's report finds the intensification of shows has had a negative impact on the quality of life of residents and that a lack of trust remains a persistent issue between the parties.

While residents want no concerts for the next two years, Croke Park has offered to adhere to three concerts per year. Mr Mulvey said the result is a stalemate.

Between 2017 and 2019 the report is proposing nine concerts, with an exception for a special event during centenary celebrations in 2016.

Earlier this year residents threatened legal action, but Mr Mulvey said it is not in his remit to comment on litigation.

Mr Duffy said he accepts that the organisation has not behaved towards residents living near Croke Park in the past as it should have done in certain respects.

However, he said the GAA had also done a number of positive things for the area.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, he accepted that five concerts on consecutive days was too many.

He said there was a commitment to host no more than three concerts in a row in the future.

Mr Duffy also said an umbrella representative group for all the residents around Croke Park was badly needed, as well as a written agreement.

Croke Park residents are to informally discuss the recommendations tonight and in full next Tuesday evening.