Massive Garda operation ahead of busy weekend

By Mary Dennehy

AS THE debate over additional resources for Tallaght Garda Station continues, The Echo reports on the manpower and resources needed for two major local events this weekend – which will see close to 200 officers drafted in.

Tallaght Garda Station shares resources with Rathfarnham Garda Station, which falls into the same district, and together they share a Superintendent and a combined work force of around 260 officers.

Rovers Tallaght Stadium 3

As with most stations nationwide, the district of Tallaght and its sub-district of Rathfarnham are stretched to the limit – and that’s not taking into consideration the resources needed to plan and man large public events. 

Alongside routine calls, locations such as Marlay Park, Tallaght Stadium, the National Basketball Arena, Tallaght Hospital, IT Tallaght and the Civic Square in Tallaght are among a number of places that may require a Garda presence from time to time – not to mention community events such as Tallafest.

Last Friday and Saturday, for example, officers from right across the Dublin region were drafted in to assist the Tallaght and Rathfarnham force with the Kodaline and Stone Roses gigs in Marlay Park – which lies within the district.

According to official Garda information, there were three arrests at Kodaline, nine at the Stone Roses and, across both nights, around 15 drug minor drug seizures.

The Garda team in Marlay Park also ended up responding to a violent brawl between 100 young men in the nearby area of Ballinteer on the evening of the Stone Roses gig – which saw 15 people arrested.

This weekend, the local force will be back down in Marlay Park for three-day music festival, Longitude – with around 140 uniformed and plain clothes officers and operational units on the beat.

On Friday, Shamrock Rovers also take on Airtricity League rivals Bohemians, while on Saturday, the Tallaght side plays Leeds United – with both games on home turf.

Superintendent Peter Duff told The Echo: “This will be a pretty intense weekend for everyone and a lot of long days for officers.

“We are drawing resources from the entire Dublin region and will have up to 200 gardaí working the both venues.

“At any one time we’ll have around 140 officers in Marley Park and 40 at Tallaght Stadium.

“We have a special plan for working the stadium and a special cohort of local officers who work alongside the gardaí brought in.”

He said: “We will have normal policing at both Tallaght and Rathfarnham stations over the weekend to respond to calls and visits.

“And, for anybody going to the events I would advise them to come early, obey instructions and drink responsibly.”

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