Council, HSE and Gardaí Remind Public of Cancelled Festivals and Events in Kerry

Michael O’Brien, Castleisland (left) and Patrick McCarthy, Listowel taking a break from the festivities at Puck Fair – one of Ireland’s oldest fairs, the 2020 staging of which has been cancelled due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. ©Photograph: John Reidy 11-8-1990

An Garda Síochána, the Health Services Executive and Kerry County Council are reminding members of the public that a large number of festivals, fairs and public events over the coming weeks in Kerry have been cancelled or postponed because of current advice and restrictions in relation to the coronavirus, COVID-19.

Puck and Kenmare Fairs Cancelled

The three organisations, which are part of the Cork-Kerry Interagency Emergency Management Group, have come together to remind everyone, in particular, that neither Puck Fair in Killorglin nor the traditional annual Fair Day in Kenmare on August 15th are taking place this year because of the global pandemic and the threat posed to public health by the potential congregation of large numbers of people as well as likely difficulties in relation to observing social distancing.

Do not Congregate 

The Gardaí, the HSE and the Council have appealed to people not to gather informally or congregate at either of these locations on the traditional fair dates and to desist from travelling to Killorglin or Kenmare in the expectation of any informal, parallel or ‘unofficial’ gatherings.

They have emphasised however that the usual dates for Puck Fair and the Fair Day in Kenmare will be normal business days in Killorglin and Kenmare respectively and members of the public should continue to go about their business on these dates in a safe way.

Appeal for Responsible Action

Puck Fair in Killorglin and Fair Day in Kenmare are great social events, but unfortunately these social occasions pose a risk to public health at the moment,” said Garda Superintendent Flor Murphy.

I am appealing to people to act responsibly and to comply with the public health advice. We will be implementing additional policing measures at both locations to ensure public health guidelines are complied with,” said Superintendent Murphy.

Important to Hold Firm

Meanwhile, Community Work Manager with Cork Kerry Community Healthcare at the HSE, Hilary Scanlan, said that communities have worked very hard to flatten the curve of Covid-19 and to keep everyone safe.

“It’s important that we all continue to ‘Hold Firm’ and remember the government guidelines on gatherings and physical distancing,” said Ms. Scanlan.

Leadership Shown in Cancellations 

The Mayor of County Kerry, Cllr Patrick Connor-Scarteen thanked the organisers of these events for showing leadership in cancelling the festivals which are traditionally such an important part of the summer in the county.

“COVID-19 is still with us and personal behaviour is paramount in continuing to flatten the curve and it is essential that we do not have any attempts to have parallel or private gatherings in contravention of the guidelines.

“We all hope that the many summer festivals in the county will be in position to resume their tremendous work and bring enjoyment to visitors once again in 2021,” said the mayor.