Risks associated with hosting the popular Scariff Harbour Festival have prompted organisers to cancel the event for 2020.

Scheduled to be held over the August bank-holiday weekend, organisers informed The Clare Echo on Tuesday morning that the Harbour Festival would not be proceeding this year. Sponsored by Waterways Ireland, committee members have admitted they would have been unable to adhere to Government recommendations and COVID-19 restrictions.

“It is a huge disappointment for the community, festival goers and the organising committee that this year’s festival cannot happen,” Festival Chairman, Mike Rodgers said. “We looked into every possible angle to try and find a way in which even some elements of the festival might happen, but the safety of people was our top priority and determined the final outcome”.

This year would have been the 18th Harbour Festival with a provisional programme events already in place. This included a mix of free outdoor music, walks, talks, guest speakers, boat tours and children’s entertainment.

Harry O’Meara has been on the Festival Committee since its inception and has witnessed the growth in standing for the Scariff Harbour Festival over almost two decades.

“It is with a huge sense of regret that we had to reach this decision. The festival has attracted many people from all over Clare and beyond including people native to East Clare who are now living elsewhere in Ireland or abroad. The risks associated with such a gathering are simply too high,” he admitted.

Committee members have already outlined that they are determined to make the 2021 return of the Harbour Festival a memorable one.

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Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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