Carlow will be left behind this summer if the alcohol bye-laws in the town aren’t changed urgently.
There’s a big push on outdoor dining this year due to the pandemic with grants available for businesses and local authorities to develop spaces and seating areas.
Applications are open now for local pubs and restaurants to apply to the county councils for up to €4,000 in funding for outdoor seating.
But Carlow’s by-laws don’t allow alcohol to be served at outside tables and Cllr Ken Murnane has been telling KCLR News “No matter what Government may do regarding outside dining, Carlow because of its bylaws on alcohol means that neither a bar nor a restaurant or anyone can serve alcohol outside of their premises like in a public thoroughfare, on a footpath or on a car parking space outside their property”
He adds “Unless they can have a drink with their meal it’ll be totally a waste of time in Carlow, something needs to be done but it needs to be done now so that it’s working during the summer, there’s no point having the bylaws at the end of next October, that’s just a complete waste of time and completely defeats the purpose”.
And Cllr Murnane says the council needs to find a solution for this in the short term to help local businesses survive the pandemic.
Meanwhile, Martina Comerford from Kilkenny County Council has been outlining to Sue Nunn on last evening’s The Way It Is some exciting plans for the city centre’s outdoor dining options – listen back to that conversation here: