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Martin’s weekly protest strikes a chord with public sentiment

July 15th, 2022 5:10 PM

By Kieran O'Mahony

Martin Leahy, left, outside Leinster House recently, accompanied by John Neville.

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A WEST Cork singer songwriter, who released a song about the housing crisis, has been travelling to Dublin every Thursday for the past eight weeks with his amp in tow to sing his song outside the gates of Leinster House.

Martin Leahy’s track Everyone Should Have a Home, which was released in April and is accompanied by a clever video made by artist Eileen Healy, has resonated with people as the country faces one of the biggest housing crises in years.

Martin himself had been looking for new accommodation after his home in Ballinadee was put up for sale by his landlord, but that has now been put on hold for a few months, which he said will give him ‘breathing space’ to look for somewhere else.

He had even been contemplating moving to France as he was unable to find any suitable accommodation in the area.

Martin said the reaction to him singing outside Leinster House every lunchtime on Thursdays has been really good over the past eight weeks.

‘Musicians and other activists have been coming up to me every week and a number of politicians have also come out to support me,’ said Martin, who plays for an hour and plays the song over and over and will continue his one man protest for the forseeable future.

Martin, who is well known in Cork music circles, said there is a lot of interest in what he is doing and that it’s gathering momentum. 

He also recently sang his song outside Cork City Hall during a protest organised by the National Homeless and Hosing Coalition.

Meanwhile, he has also been lined up to play at Kinsale Arts Weekend and will play at the Lord Kingsale on July 10th at 8pm and tickets are €10.

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