Doyle: Bring back ‘pub with no beer’
Mr Doyle said the initiative, which was used in the city in the late eighties and early nineties and made a return for the St Patrick’s Day, should be re-introduced as a method of keeping young people off the streets at night and avoiding anti-social behaviour.
Mr Doyle made the comments after news broke over the weekend that local Creggan priest, Fr. Harkin was considering sleeping elsewhere at night due to teenagers congregating adjacent to the Parochial House.
Mr Doyle said: “Speak to young people in our city and you will be told almost universally that ‘having nowhere to go’ is a major concern for them and their friends. We have recently seen over the last number of days how anti-social behaviour with teenagers congregating near the Parochial House at St Mary’s in Creggan can have a hugely negative impact on the community. As a result, we have a duty to come up with innovative solutions to address head-on the problem of young people out in the community at all hours, having nowhere to go and at times causing distress and annoyance amongst residents.
“The ‘Pub with No Beer’ was a hugely successful and sought-after highlight in the past for young people in Derry, so much so that in this year’s St Patrick’s celebrations, it was revived for one night. It gives young people the opportunity to enjoy themselves in a safe environment with the element of entertainment that the city is famous for with the comfort for local residents across the town knowing young people will not be loitering around their homes.
“I emphasise the vast majority of young people in the city are responsible, friendly and would be horrified if they thought that they were causing distress to anyone. All too often we are hearing the negative stories, and there must be an element of parental responsibility involved in tackling those that do disrupt the community, but we need to be doing all we can to offer positive alternatives to young people.”