Bhí sé fuar ar na doirneoga on Saturday but we have to remember that we spend two hours there on a Saturday while stall-holders are there all day and some, every day except Sunday. One shift of the DCC sanitation workers starts work at 6am and, according to one worker, “it was Baltic” that morning. In Troy’s butchers we were told that snow had fallen already in Galway. Some of us also remember the Monday to Friday six-week Blockade maintained in February and March 2016 from 6.30am to around 4pm. Two pairs of socks and plastic bags over the feet inside shoes or boots and still the cold crept in.
After we had set up our table, we distributed leaflets we had prepared informing people on how to make an observation on the Hammerson demolition application should they wish to formally object to it. The deadline for observations is December 13th. Hammerson have three applications being considered by the City Managers and objecting to each for the first time costs €20, i.e a total of €60. Another possible obstacle for some people is that their name and address have to be included in the observation and the content will be published. Most of the independent businesses on the street who are on leases or rental ranging from two weeks to two months (and even the latter needing only two week’s notice to quit) may feel vulnerable to the displeasure of their landlord, who in many cases is the same Hammerson property speculator.
We had our new-look petition sheets on display at our table and despite the cold by the end of our shift had over 25 signatures, to add to the well over 380,000 we have gathered over the years. Our previous version was a rough photocopied sheet and the wording reflected how we saw our campaign group at the time. The new version looks more attractive and also reflects our growth into an independent group over the years.
Our campaign group, being completely independent of any political or commercial group, pays for the printing of such material through donations from the public, received mostly at our table.
Our foireann (team) today was Bróna, Orla and Diarmuid but Bróna had to leave early (busy woman).
People who stopped at our table to support us on Saturday included a couple of Romanians, a foreign exchange student from UA Emirates (think of his Irish counterpart who’s walking around in light summer clothes, sandals and sunscreen cream over there!) and some others of migrant background whose origins we did not get.
Among the many Irish were a couple from Iúr Cinn Trá (officially abbreviated to “an tIúr” and known in English as “Newry”). An elderly Dubliner who stopped to sign the petition and chat was correct in saying that the street needs renovation but not the planned demolition and chain store shopping development which will be the resulting “development”. He had a few choice words to say about the Government and property speculators and the connections he sees between them!
You can still listen this week until Thursday night to the interview with Diarmuid on Dublin City FM community radio on https://www.dublincityfm.ie/shows/thats-life/ — click on the icon for the most recent program (25th). We are unsure if it can be accessed after Thursday.
You can support us from wherever you are by sharing our posts on Facebook or our website from time to time, spreading the word, reaching people we can’t and that the media won’t.