Punchestown ain’t goin’ down as Brooks venue

Garth Brooks in Croke Park last January to announce the concerts. Photo Mark Stedman
Punchestown racecourse is not likely to become the venue for any of the Garth Brooks concerts.

Punchestown racecourse is not likely to become the venue for any of the Garth Brooks concerts.

The country’s premier national hunt horseracing venue is a well established concert and event venue capable of accommodating the number of people involved.

Punchestown was immediately being mooted as an alternative venue for two of the five gigs originally planned by the country singing legend for Croke Park on July 28 and 29.

The concerts had to be called off when Dublin City Council declined to grant permission because it did not want to set a precedent for increasing the number of concerts in Croke Park.

As of time of going to press, no final decision had been made on the fate of all five concerts.

However the lead-in time to bring any of the concerts to Kildare is not long enough to facilitate a transfer from Croke Park.

“The reality is we’d like to have it but the circumstances and the issues involved would make it very difficult given the timeframe, the logistics and other issues,” said Richie Galway of Punchestown racecourse.

He added that securing the appropriate licence is an eleven week process.

“Kildare County Council are and have been very supportive and flexible and have been instrumental in attracting events to Punchestown but I don’t know if this could be expedited.”

He pointed out that Punchestown is green field site without the facilities of Croke Park like seating and other in-built infrastructure.

“To put all of this in place in place would create huge difficulties, even with the best will in the worlds. Working on the basis that it would have the support of the local community.”