Last year's Galway Festival took place behind closed doors. James Crombie/INPHO
limited numbers

Disappointing news for Galway Festival as 1,000 spectators permitted to attend each day

Organisers had hoped to allow 5,000 fans through the turnstiles daily.

THE GALWAY FESTIVAL has received a blow with news that just 1,000 spectators will be allowed to attend the 2021 edition each day. 

While the figure is an improvement on last year, which saw the event take place without crowds at Ballybrit due to Covid-19 restrictions, organisers had been hoping that 5,000 spectators per day would be permitted

145,000 fans were at the 2019 Galway Festival.

With racing due to start on Monday, 26 July and run through to Sunday, 1 August, Galway Races chief executive Michael M0loney made the announcement in a video posted on social media this morning.

“We got news late yesterday evening that we will be able to host a thousand spectators on each day of the summer festival, commencing on Monday, 26 July,” said Moloney.

“Given the support that we have got over the last couple of weeks, we know this will be extremely disappointing news to all our fans who had been looking forward to the opportunity to come back to Ballybrit this year.

In terms of our sponsors and everybody who had been working towards a larger festival, it will be disappointing. 

“On the upside, it is 7,000 more people than we had this time last year, and for those who do get to come to Ballybrit this year, we’re delighted we will have owners back and a small amount of the public on top of that. 

“We’re certainly looking forward to making it an event that will be worth being at. We’re also so fortunate that we have huge support in terms of television coverage this year. You can tune in live on RTÉ on the first four days, TG4 on Friday and Saturday and then Racing TV are covering it throughout the week as well as all of our social channels.

“For those who sadly won’t be able to be with us this year, we really hope that you will join us along the way in terms of keeping an eye on what’s happening at Ballybrit. We’re still looking forward to great racing.” 

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