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CITY TRIBUNE

Questions for Galway 2020 over legacy funds invite

Dara Bradley

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Bradley Bytes – a sort of political column with Dara Bradley

The Galway City Tribune recently revealed that €1 million earmarked and ring-fenced for legacy initiatives associated with Galway’s European Capital of Culture designation, has been subsumed into Galway 2020’s operational and programme costs.

That means there’s no money for legacy, which is an integral reason why cities bid to win the prestigious title – it’s supposed to leave a lasting legacy.

Galway’s sister culture capital Rijeka in Croatia has already been transformed with new physical infrastructure, a new cultural quarter on its seafront. Galway, on the other hand, has no physical legacy or new buildings. There were some good projects and some positive legacies in terms of audience engagement. Some artists and organisations benefited, too, though it was far from a bonanza pay-day for most local groups and artists.

No, overall, it could be argued that the legacy is and will be a negative one: an artistic community divided over it.

What damage has the pervading attitude of ‘pull on the maroon jersey; hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil’ done to the critical faculties of Galway’s artists and cultural community?

With some notable exceptions – like Páraic Breathnach and poet Rita Ann Higgins – Galway’s cultural and artistic community was cowed into not criticising Galway 2020 for fear the crumbs from the big budget wouldn’t fall their way. So too were most politicians – they found their tongues when it was too late and after most of them ignored repeated early warnings about the direction of the project, which was funded almost entirely from the public purse.

But it’s not too late to ensure the European Capital of Culture has some sort of positive legacy.

Galway 2020 has been invited to the City Council’s Economic, Community and Cultural SPC (Strategic Policy Committee) December meeting, which takes place today (Friday), and is chaired by Labour’s Níall McNelis.

It would be really helpful if the members of that committee asked Galway 2020 representatives why it didn’t apply for money from Fáilte Ireland to create an infrastructural legacy.

According to correspondence released to us through Freedom of Information (FOI), there were at least two occasions last year – on May 29, and April 17 – when Fáilte Ireland invited Galway 2020 to apply for funding through its capital investment programme, which is reserved for projects of “legacy and longevity” and required a detailed impact analysis on the potential of future tourism revenue.

Fáilte Ireland has confirmed to us that its offer was never taken up by Galway 2020. Why not?

(PHOTO: Poet Rita Ann Higgins)
For more Bradley Bytes, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

CITY TRIBUNE

Unselfing with TULCA over the weekend

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TULCA Festival of Visual Arts will present a programme of visual arts events this weekend to celebrate its UnSelfing programme.

UnSelfing is a series of exhibitions, performances and art events that was TULCA’s contribution to Galway 2020’s visual arts programme.

Several TULCA events took place during 2020, but Covid-19 put paid to others. Like every other arts group involved in the European Capital of Culture, the festival had to reimagine its programme.

The result is this weekend’s projects. They include a film commission, a new book and a radio play- podcast.

The World premiere of the film, entitled A Visit, A Ceremony, A Gift airs online this Friday, April 16, at 9pm. Created by artist and philosopher Elisabeth von Samsonow and curator Kate Strain, it involved commissioning work by artists from Ireland and France. The resulting collage of film, sculpture, music, sound and design explores people’s access to nature through poetry. This project has been supported by the French Embassy.

The second project is a new publication being launched on Saturday. XVIII – Stories of TULCA explores 18 years of the festival as well as its UnSelfing programme.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Small shops fight back in store wars

Dara Bradley

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Caroline McCarthy

A popular city boutique has threatened to re-open in breach of Covid-19 restrictions – to highlight the unfairness of supermarkets selling so-called ‘non-essential’ goods.

The proprietor of Lanidor on Eyre Street said she is ‘taking a stand’, and has urged all retailers to follow suit, unless the authorities crack-down on those bending the rules.

“This stuff about ‘oh we’re all in it together’ is a load of rubbish,” fumed Caroline McCarthy, who said the multiples were ignoring restrictions while independent retailers remain shuttered.

She said all non-essential retail should be open, or none, but the current situation was “discriminatory”.

“I’ve had it at this stage. I’ve lost it. I can’t put up with this anymore. On a point of principle and on a practical level, someone has to do something about it. It’s not that we want to open.

“We have adhered to every single one of the regulations. But we are making a stand now. We will go ahead and open, at a date to be announced, if they are not shut down. And we would call on retailers across the country to do the same,” she said.

Under public health guidelines only ‘essential’ retail outlets are permitted to open. They are not permitted to sell ‘non-essential’ goods during Level 5. This is to stop people congregating and browsing in order to limit the spread of the virus.

But large retailers such as Dunnes Stores and Marks and Spencer stand accused of selling ‘non-essential’ clothing during the pandemic, even though clothes shops should be closed.

Galway Gardaí visited stores last weekend on foot of a complaint.

A spokesperson for M&S said it was following the guidelines but the tills in its Galway store’s clothing section was staffed on Saturday.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Darragh recalls grandparents in ‘Tilly and the Postmaster’

Declan Tierney

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Darragh O'Dea.

By Declan Tierney

An album that was two years in the making and is in memory of the singer’s grandparents will be released shortly . . . and even before its release, Darragh O’Dea’s album already proving hugely popular with his loyal following.

The paternal grandparents of the accomplished Tuam singer and songwriter passed away in the past year, so he decided name the album he was making in their honour.

Darragh has performed with local bands The Coonics and Ralphs over the years, but this is his first full-length solo album. He’s funding it via the website Kickstarter and the pre-release sales have been incredibly encouraging.

It’s entitled Tilly and the Postmaster to celebrate the lives of Tilly who died in January of this year and her husband of 63 years, Neil O’Dea, who was laid to rest in May 2020.

Neil, the father of Galway footballers Jimmy, Conor and Padraic O’Dea, was the retired Postmaster in Tuam and a prominent member of the town’s GAA club.

Darragh, a born songwriter, explained he wanted to remember his late grandparents at what was a difficult time for the whole family.

His father Sean O’Dea, a member of Tuam Golf Club, is the elder statesman of the family but one who is incredibly proud of his son and mentions Darragh’s musical skills at every opportunity. His mother Carmel is an avid walker.

In a reversal of current trends, Darragh’s new album is being released on old-fashioned vinyl and CD as well as online. He has also produced a limited-edition t-shirt in conjunction with the album for those who have supported his Kickstarter campaign.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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