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Kerry councillor and publican Niall 'Botty' O'Callaghan calls for Government stop sale of takeaway pints

'Walking around with plastic cups and stuff is not an image that we want for Killarney'

Kerry councillor and publican Niall 'Botty' O'Callaghan says the Government needs to stop the sale of takeaway pints

Neil Fetherstonhaugh

Kerry County Councillor Niall 'Botty' O'Callaghan has called for the Government to stop the sale of takeaway pints.

The Killarney representative, who is also a publican, told Newstalk Breakfast that people “walking around with plastic cups and stuff” is not an image that we wants for his town.

"If we want outdoor life to continue over the course of the summer, then we have to co-exist with both other businesses and with residents,” he said.

"And I think the takeaway pints is the first step towards doing that.

"I don't think there's a need for takeaway pints, and we respect the town we live in - it's not an image that we would like to portray for Killarney because Killarney's a family-friendly town, it's a safe town.

"I can understand if young people, or anybody, walking up the street with plastic glasses in their hand and older people coming down the street it can be a little bit intimidating.

"Walking around with plastic cups and stuff is not an image that we want for Killarney.

"I think it's a national issue, I think the Government needs to just stop the sale of takeaway pints.

"The outdoor dining could work but we all need to co-exist: the publicans need to co-exist with our neighbours in the retail sector, we also need to respect the residents of the area.

"And, at the end of the day, the people living in the towns all over Ireland they have to be respected.

"Greed should never outdo quality of life".

Yesterday, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the government would introduce legislative measures to deal with on-street service by pubs and restaurants not being covered by alcohol licences.

The Taoiseach’s comments come after a number of pubs in Galway were warned by gardaí that alcohol cannot be served outside their premises.

Minister for Justice Heather Humphreys said on Monday that gardaí will “use discretion” to ensure that on-street hospitality can continue but also said that the government “examine whether further measures are required”.

In January, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said they were working on new public health regulations that strengthen the law “around drinking alcohol in public streets, and that will give the gardaí more powers of enforcement".

"When it comes to selling takeaway alcohol, that's not illegal - anybody who's getting their takeaway... you can get your bottle of wine or bottle of beer with that, nobody wants to ban that.

"So what we could potentially do is ban the sale of all alcohol after a certain point of time in the day.

"It's that type of thing that we're looking at", he added.

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