Garth Brooks fans in Longford are still experiencing frustration as the fiasco surrounding the American country music star’s Croke Park concerts continues, while local businesses will be left counting the cost if the events cannot be salvaged.
“I wish they would all make up their minds one way or the other,” said Dolores Connell, who is due to attend the last concert on Tuesday, July 29, with her family. “My son will be home from Australia at the time and eight of us planned to go as a treat. The tickets were almost €70 each, which is a huge amount of money and not something you go into lightly in this day and age.”
Ms Connell admitted she has been left in the dark while the parties involved in the concert stand-off attempt to find a resolution.
“All I’ve heard is that Ticketmaster are holding out to see if the concerts will go ahead before issuing refunds.
“It all comes down to greed: the GAA, the promoters, and Garth Brooks himself,” Ms Connell claimed. “I’m a little bit disappointed with him (Garth Brooks). He was happy to do two shows originally, and the way he’s carrying on now, you’d swear he was doing it for charity.
“The GAA shouldn’t have agreed to let Aiken Promotions use Croke Park as it was already beyond the agreed quota [with local residents]. There are laws there and the residents should be respected.”
And it is not just local fans who are being inconvenienced by the current situation.
Alan Farrelly of Farrellys bus and coach hire company in Kenagh explained that more 2,000 Garth Brooks fans have made bookings to travel to the concerts through their ConcertBus.ie website, with services departing from several points throughout the country.
“It’s causing a huge problem for us; we’re in limbo” he admitted. “We have brought in other companies to provide some of the services, and we’ve turned down private hire bookings to meet the demand.
“Apparently ticket refunds will be issued on Thursday if no progress has been made, so we’ll have to wait and see what happens then. We’re hoping for a positive outcome, but either way we’d love to know what’s happenings so we can plan.
“Ten buses each day are due to travel to Dublin for the concerts,” he continued. “That’s 50 driver shifts in total. We need to be able to tell these drivers if they’ll be working these runs or not.”