A DEBS fundraiser turned ugly in the West Cork village of Ballydehob on Hallowe’en night.
A local publican has said that between eight and 10 busloads of young people – some of whom were already drunk – descended on the village on the Tuesday night and that ‘their behaviour left elderly people feeling petrified.’
He said: ‘There were loads of screaming kids and shouting around the place, and teenagers throwing up all over the street.’
The youths were there for a Debs fundraiser that was being held in a venue in the centre of the village.
The publican said: ‘There was security on the door at that venue with bouncers checking ID, but there were another 200 on the street, aged 15 and upwards.’
The publican, who wishes to remain anonymous, complained that there was no forewarning that the event was scheduled to take place and that he, and several other publicans, closed their pubs early because the situation on the streets was ‘too messy.’
‘No one knew it was happening so we were not prepared, which is a pity, because the start of Hallowe’en night was lovely with all the little kids, accompanied by their parents, doing Trick or Treat.
‘This kicked off at around 9-9.30pm. The streets started getting noisy,’ said the publican, who witnessed the events as he stood at the entrance to his own business.
The publican said there were plenty of young people who were perfectly well behaved, but there were also lots of young people who tried to get into pubs and get drink despite the fact that they were underage.
‘Some did have ID, but I didn’t believe it,’ said the publican, who stressed that his licence is too important to him to take the risk of serving someone who might be under age.
Schull-based garda Sgt James O’Donovan confirmed that there were two patrol cars in Ballydehob that night – one from Schull and one from Ballydehob.
He said it was late when they got notification that there was a number of young people coming to Ballydehob and that they quickly put ‘a plan of action in place to target underage drinking.’
The sergeant said they dealt with the situation they were presented with, and continued to monitor the situation until around 1am.