Vinters validated as Good Friday pints a great success in Galway

The opening of pubs on Good Friday was a great success according to the chairman of the Galway city branch of the Vintners Federation Ireland (VFI ), Tom McDonagh.

On Friday licensed premises could open and serve alcohol in Ireland for the first time since 1926.

McDonagh believes that Galway's tourism benefited greatly from the pubs being able to open their doors and welcome customers.

"It was a normal, busy Friday. We had a huge amount of tourists in the pubs throughout the city and this was the driving force behind getting the law changed.

"Tourism is very important to Ireland and pubs are very important to tourism, and tourists not being allowed to go into the pub and have a drink on Good Friday was embarrassing in my opinion. The law should have been changed 10 years ago.

"I am delighted it was a success because we [VFI] fought very hard to allow the pubs to open on Good Friday. The positive reaction by tourists and customers means that we were validated in our efforts; [changing the law] was definitely the right move."

And for the gardaí it was a case of business as usual as revellers treated Good Friday like any other Friday.

A Garda spokesperson said: "Good Friday was no different to what we would expect on a normal Friday night. There was no trouble to report. There was a very nice atmosphere around the city with many families taking advantage of the Galway Food Fair."

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