Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Gaza: A Truce At All Costs?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville ceasefire talks deliver fragile deal

Read more

FOCUS

Sluggish tourist season in Crimea

Read more

ENCORE!

Bartabas : Mixing Christ with Spanish music and dancing horses

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shifts in the propaganda war waged between Israelis and Palestinians

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French MPs face quandary in pro-Palestinian rallies

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Yezid Sayigh, Senior Associate at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut

Read more

#TECH 24

Mind the Gender Gap : getting more women into the tech sector

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Bolivian children: heading to work aged 10

Read more

  • Wreckage from missing Algerian plane reportedly found: Malian TV

    Read more

  • France says missing Algerian plane 'probably crashed'

    Read more

  • Deadly strike on UN shelter in Gaza Strip

    Read more

  • Pope meets with Sudanese Christian woman sentenced to death for apostasy

    Read more

  • Algerian jet vanishes: 'We should eliminate the missile hypothesis'

    Read more

  • Italy’s Nibali cruises to easy victory in 18th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament elects moderate Kurd as president

    Read more

  • US, European aviation agencies lift travel restrictions to Tel Aviv

    Read more

  • No end to fighting until Israel ends Gaza blockade, Hamas says

    Read more

  • Two foreign women shot dead in western Afghanistan

    Read more

  • At least 60 killed in attack on prison convoy near Baghdad

    Read more

  • Cycling is ‘winning the war on doping,’ says expert

    Read more

  • Ceasefire agreed for Central African Republic

    Read more

  • Can Jew-kissing-Arab selfie give peace a viral chance?

    Read more

  • Botched Arizona execution takes nearly two hours

    Read more

Thunder rolls in Dublin as Garth Brooks comeback gigs cancelled

AFP

Singer Garth Brooks onstage during the 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 7, 2013Singer Garth Brooks onstage during the 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 7, 2013

Singer Garth Brooks onstage during the 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 7, 2013Singer Garth Brooks onstage during the 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 7, 2013

A hotly anticipated comeback by country music star Garth Brooks in Dublin later this month suffered a serious setback on Thursday when the local authorities refused a licence for two of his five sold-out shows.

Some 400,000 tickets for the Croke Park stadium gigs, billed as a "Comeback Special Event" before a promised world tour by the US singer later this year, had sold out in record time as Brooks-mania swept Ireland.

But residents living near the stadium complained that the size of the crowd -- about one tenth of the Irish population -- would effectively make them prisoners in their own homes.

Dublin City Council has now granted permission for the first three concerts on July 25, 26 and 27, but not those planned for July 28 and 29 -- leaving 160,000 ticket holders without a show to go to.

"The scale, magnitude and number of the concerts with an expected attendance of in excess of 80,000 people per night over five consecutive nights -- three of them week nights -- is unprecedented," the council said in a statement.

Croke Park already hosted boyband One Direction for three sold-out concerts in May on top of regular sporting events.

But the council said that holding all five Brooks concerts would lead to an "unacceptable level of disruption" to local residents and businesses due to noise, traffic disruption and potential antisocial behaviour.

A spokesperson for the stadium owners, the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA), told AFP that "as things stand" permission had been granted for the first three gigs and they would issue a statement later.

Last week a mediation process aimed at resolving the dispute recommended that in future Croke Park should not host concerts for four or five consecutive nights.

The report also recommended the GAA pay a one-off grant of 500,000 euros ($680,000) to the local community for a "Garth Brooks legacy fund" -- intended to compensate them for the disruption.

But some local residents rejected the proposals and said they had not ruled out legal action if a licence was granted for all five nights.

Independent Dublin councillor Cieran Perry said the council's decision was "a reasonable compromise in the circumstances".

The concerts are expected to provide a boost to Irish tourism, as 70,000 tickets were sold to fans outside Ireland.

Brooks, who played two sell-out shows in Croke Park in 1997, is one of the biggest stars in country music and one of the top selling artists of all time.

He has only played occasional shows since announcing his retirement in 2001 to raise his children, but has promised to return to touring later this year.

Date created : 2014-07-03