Belfast Telegraph

Carlingford booze louts could face fine of more than £2,000

Action: councillor Antoin Watters
Action: councillor Antoin Watters

By Laura Lynott

Revellers at one of Ireland's beauty spots could have a rude awakening this Easter, with the threat of being arrested or €2,500 fines if they are involved in anti-social drinking.

Gardai will be patrolling Carlingford in Co Louth across the bank holiday weekend in an attempt to stop what people feel is destroying the coastal town's streets.

Residents have been campaigning for Louth County Council to take action after previous Easter breaks witnessed undesirable scenes of public drinking.

Now by-laws have been rolled out with a view to restrict any consumption of alcohol outside over the weekend.

The by-laws are being publicised by the council across social networks and on street signs.

They say: "Any person who contravenes a provision of these by-laws is guilty of an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding €2,500 (£2,163)."

Councillor Antoin Watters said the campaign to clamp down on public drinking had come about after two years of residents' lobbying for restrictions.

"I've been working with local residents on this and it's culminated in a special operation over the Easter bank holiday weekend," Mr Watters said.

"That means extra Garda resources to curb drinking in public spaces.

"I'm delighted to see this operation will be put in place."

However, Marie Larkin, manager of Riina's restaurant in the town, did not agree with the strict measures.

"I think it's going a bit too far - it's a bit overboard," she said.

"I don't think that this campaign should be targeting young people.

"If the publicans let them in to get really drunk and then put them out onto the street, that just should not be happening."

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