Antisocial behaviour at Thurles Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann puts the future of the event in jeopardy.
The 15th annual Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann, held in Thurles, was marred by antisocial behaviour leaving several business premises with large windows smashed and Liberty Square littered with broken bottles and glasses.
National chairman of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann (CCÉ) Michael O'Callaghan says these incidents were carried out by a small minority who invaded Thurles
Thinking they had a licence for all kinds of debauchery and they were let get away with it and that is something that will cause concern throughout the country because in future people won't be inclined to go to a fleadh where such conduct carries on.
He is disgusted by the acts of hooliganism that took place.
It puts in jeopardy a great national cultural event, now we haven’t so many national cultural events in Ireland that we can afford to lose any of them.
The entire country should be resentful that the Fleadh’s extinction could be brought about by the behaviour of fringe groups that came to Thurles simply to create trouble.
While the festival in Thurles failed to provide people with the opportunity to meet together in a friendly atmosphere and hold music sessions, the competitions were successful. This is the true measure of success for the Fleadh.
However, Michael O'Callaghan does not believe the Fleadh can continue in its present form and its future will be decided at the next CCÉ congress.
If the festival could be held at some other time of the year rather than over the June bank holiday weekend, then he is confident it would attract the enthusiast rather than the unruly element.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 7 June 1965. The reporter is Kevin McDonald.