Good Friday ban on alcohol will be lifted for all premises by 2018
It should be in place by next year...
The lift on alcohol selling on Good Friday will not be restricted to pubs, it will apply to all premises.
It had already been announced by Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald that the government would not stand in the way of the private member's bill, which aims to abolish the ban for pubs and off-licences, brought forward by Senator Billy Lawless.
According to The Irish Times, she will today ask her cabinet colleagues for amendments so that the bill covers all premises, and not just pubs.
“While the Bill would, if enacted in its current form, permit the sale of intoxicating liquor on Good Friday in public houses and off-licences, it would not permit such sales in other categories of licensed premises, such as restaurants and hotels," a government source told The Irish Times.
"Moreover, it would not apply in the case of registered clubs. It would therefore introduce further anomalies and unfair trading conditions in respect of the sale of alcohol on Good Friday.”
For the last 90 years, only those who happen to be on a train, on a boat, in the theatre or staying in a hotel in Ireland would be have been able to enjoy alcohol on Good Friday.
Since the restriction was put in place in 1927, there has been that mad dash on Holy Thursday to the off-licence as the entire nation seemed to lose the run of themselves over the prospect of not being able to buy drink for 24 hours.
Speaking earlier this year, Donall O'Keeffe, the CEO of the Licensed Vintners Association and the Vintners Federation of Ireland said:
"There is no case for the licensed trade to be treated differently to other retail businesses. Easter is a huge tourism weekend right across the country.
"Forcing pubs and all licensed hospitality businesses to close sends a very negative signal to tourists and visitors who are left baffled and disappointed by the measure."