A Playful City

Jane Jacobs, the doyenne of urban planning, believed that the success of any city owed a lot to the “intricacy of pavement use, bringing with it a constant succession of eyes”. She wrote, in The Death and Life of Great American Cities, “There must be eyes upon the street, eyes belonging to those we might call the natural proprietors of the street. The buildings on a street equipped to handle strangers, and to ensure the safety of both residents and strangers, must be oriented to the street. They cannot turn their backs or blank sides on it and leave it blind.” But what happens when the residents and strangers are themselves blind to their surroundings, always in a

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Deserted Dublin: ‘It’s like the zombie apocalypse out there’

“It’s like the zombie apocalypse out there,” a customer mutters into his pint in Neary’s on Chatham Street. The pub’s carpet is covered with leaves – every time the door opens a fresh batch blows in and by this stage the bar staff have given up on playing King Canute. There are no more than half a dozen people in Neary’s, but there are even fewer outside on this deeply strange Monday afternoon in Dublin city centre. Around the corner, Ophelia howls down a virtually deserted Grafton Street. The only times I’ve seen these streets this empty in daylight hours have been on Christmas Day or during a big World Cup match. A few tourists take selfies outside the shuttered stores. In a display of Teutonic indomitability, Hugo Boss is the only clothes shop open for business. The usual flower sellers, buskers and chuggers are nowhere to be seen, apart from one young Brazilian holding a sign for a Thai noodle joint. He explains he’ll be finished his shift in half an hour, so he’s not too worried about his personal safety. Outside Brown Thomas an Italian family stop suddenly and point in amazement at a perfect rainbow in the clear blue sky above. I’m confused. Rainbows. Bright sunshine. Balmy temperatures. Is this the way hurricanes (or even ex-hurricanes) are supposed to be? A patrol car cruises slowly up the street, keeping an eye on everything. “I’m new to this hurricane thing. When do we start looting?” wonders someone on Twitter, but there’s no sign of any urban disorder breaking out – in fact, the mood of the few people who are about seems to be of befuddlement.


Dublin Animation Film Festival

Pavilion Theatre

The festival will take place on 20 and 21 October – we will have a programme of events for children, screenings of the shortlisted films and welcoming a very special guest who will be taking questions after the screening of his feature film! The festival will also showcase animated short films by Irish and international animators, followed by a ballot for the Audience Choice Award. The closing event for the day will be the presentation of the 2017 DAFF awards.

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Community excellence in Ballybough

Ballybough Sports, Leisure and Community Centre, has recently won four awards. How come? How has the centre helped the community? And what’s so great about Ballybough Community Centre? We talk to some of the people behind its success. Treacy Byrne sat in an empty building and wondered whether the doors would open. The year was 2009, and Ireland was in the grip of a catastrophic economic crisis. This crisis would go on to ravage communities across Ireland, including Ballybough, a disadvantaged part of inner-city Dublin. But in Ballybough, some of the worst effects were mitigated by the n

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‘Lessons must be learned’ in aftermath of Storm Ophelia

The Green Party has said lessons must be learned in the aftermath of Storm Ophelia to “better prepare Ireland for more common exceptional weather events in the future”. Green leader Eamon Ryan said: “While the government and authorities took the storm seriously, and implemented a nationwide status red weather warning, there was a delay in getting information out to all communities, particularly the delay in providing the information through Irish Sign Language. We also need to improve procedures so that so many people are not turning up for work, only to be sent home straight away. Likewise we need better coordination around the operation and closure of public transport and other key services during red weather warnings. Yesterday, the Irish Deaf Society and the Council of Irish Sign Language Interpreters expressed their disappointment at the lack of sign language interpreters present during a number of official briefings about Storm Ophelia.


Dublin Halloween Night Run


Take a spooky sprint around the city with the Dublin Halloween Night Run around Sandymount. There are two distances to suit all levels of fitness. A 5km single lap or a 10km double lap. The course is a single loop starting and finishing beside Clanna Gael GAA club. Entries for the first year are limited to 1,000 so don’t leave it too late to enter! This is an annual SELL OUT race. Tell your friends. There will be a NEW bespoke Halloween Finisher’s Medal to meet you at the finish line along with that sense of satisfaction. Ideal midweek run for October. (Note: Numbers limited to 1,00

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What's On


Abbey Theatre

The Abbey Theatre presents Dermot Bolger’s brilliantly adapted, vibrant version of James Joyce’s classic in a thrilling production for theatre. Bloom’s odyssey is a pandemonium of live music, puppets, dancing, clowning, bowler hats and kazoos. It’s Ulysses as you’ve never imagined it before, a superbly theatrical homage to Joyce’s chronicle of Dublin life and the greatest novel of all time. Created by Abbey Theatre Director Graham McLaren, our production is absurd, brilliant and oodles of fun.

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Gate Theatre

With excoriating dialogue and sharp, compassionate insights, Nina Raine crafts a penetrating, deeply moving and shockingly funny play. The Irish Premiere of this award-winning play relocates the action from leafy suburban Hampstead to South County Dublin where Billy, born deaf into a hearing family, struggles to define who he is within his highly intellectual, yet emotionally possessive, clan. Oonagh Murphy, one of Ireland’s brightest directing talents makes her directorial debut at the Gate with this play about belonging, family and the limitations of communication. Presented as pa

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The Nightmare Realm


An extreme walk-through horror event preying on your deepest fears and nightmares and twisting them into a deadly reality. Are you ready to face your darkest nightmares and experience the artistry of fear? We are Ireland’s most extreme scare attraction, and are masters at creating horror and fear. This is not your typical (boo) haunted house – there are no ghosts and goblins – our sets and live creatures prey on your darkest fears and bring your nightmares to life. Those brave enough to venture into the Realm are advised to keep their wits about them as danger lurks in every shadow

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  • IndoEnts Independent Ents

    Gaming: Putting some reality into virtual reality #PlayersXpo

  • RTEArchives RTÉ Archives

    Viking Remains in Dublin Castle Over 100,000 artefacts discovered WATCH: @RTENews reports #OnThisDay 1986

  • TheCCD The CCD

    We're loving this illustration by @JRillustrator of Dublin featuring the city’s landmark buildings, including The CCD :)

  • APlayfulCity APlayfulCity

    The day gets underway with the playful team discussing their vision #DublinPlays17 #aplayfulcity #creative #playful

  • LordMayorDublin Lord Mayor of Dublin

    Come to Moore Street this Sunday 12-5 for the Moore Street Party - Spraoi ar an Sráid to celebrate the history & potential of the street.

  • rtenews RTÉ News

    Storm Ophelia in Pictures. Share your photographs via - if it's safe to do so.

Our Articles

Freedom of the City

Remember where the fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood took place? Or Hansel & Gretel? Well, these days, it’s not stories of the deep, dark woods parents try to spook their children with, but the bright lights of the city. Maybe they’re afraid of them growing up too quick, of venturing out into the big wide world. It’s all futile, however, because for a kid reared out in the suburbs, the ambition always is to be able to go into town one day, sans parents. It was interesting speaking to one such teen, Eric, now at the ripe old age of 16, to see how much has changed and how much has stayed the same. He recalled with us he and his friends’ first excursion, and ex

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A City of Words: John Cummins

Phil Lynott, Dr Seuss and Eminem stroll into a bar. They sit down, have a few drinks and start to have a raucously good time. That’s the sort of vibe you get from writer and performance poet, John Cummins. John would argue that Bob Marley has a place at the table too. “Bob Marley was huge where I was growing up. You’d hear him out of literally every window. And sure Dalymount Park was one of his last gigs.” John cuts a curious figure. Skinny. Tall. Thin. Bearded. But with a wild braided bardic beard, not a hipster one. Overall there’s a gentle, affable groove to

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Restoring Bow Street Distillery

Closing, albeit temporarily, a much loved Dublin attraction isn’t something you do lightly but Jameson did just that with Bow Street Distillery at the end of 2016. Following renovation, the doors are back open so we went stopped by for a visit. This beautiful and historic building has gone under numerous changes, the most recent of which has seen the building transformed into a spacious venue for distillery tours and events. Paula Reynolds is the project manager at the Jameson Brand Home, and played a central role in the redevelopment of the site. “We’ve been lucky in t

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Creative Dublin: Vanessa Daws, Swim Artist

When Vanessa Daws moved to Dublin in 2011, she did something that might seem unusual to most people, but has become a habit for her: “The first thing I did was I arranged a swim down the Liffey at dawn – what I normally do when I go on art residencies or move somewhere: I find the nearest body of water and I swim in it.” She tells me that she does this to feel more at home in a place: “to bond with a place. To be accepted by the city. Connecting, submerging, in the city. And I knew if I swam I just knew I’d be able to relax in the city. I knew it would be alright

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Time for tea

Meet Oliver Cunningham of Wall & Keogh, Dairine Keogh of Clement & Pekoe and Anya Letsko of Joy of Cha. These three are in the vanguard of Dublin’s tea-house renaissance, a movement that’s three parts infusion of leaves to one part charmingly quirky interior decor. Are they operating on a higher spiritual plane than their coffee-fuelled counterparts? Where are they on the vexed question of sugar? finds out. You people are making a bit of a song and dance about tea aren’t you? Why so? Oliver: We do take it seriously at

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The Liberties Dublin - Take a Fresh Look