16 Aug 2022

Funding outrage as popular busking family fun day is cancelled

Clonmel Busking Festival

Funding outrage as popular busking  family fun day is cancelled

The family fun day associated with the Clonmel Busking Festival has had to be cancelled due to lack of funding

One of the most important parts of the Clonmel Busking Festival, the family fun day in Denis Burke Park, has had to be cancelled.
Organisers say that the allocation from Tipperary County Council is not adequate enough to allow them run the popular family fun day. A sum of €10,000 was allocated for the Busking Festival which will be held on August 5,6 and 7 in Clonmel, a reduction of €5,000 from council funding allocated for the festival prior to the outbreak of the Covid pandemic. Simon Molloy, one of the organisers, said it was very upsetting for all involved to have had to cancel the family fun day because it was so popular.
“Over the past seven years, one of the most anticipated free events for families in Clonmel has been the Clonmel Busking Festival annual family fun day at the Denis Burke Park. An average of 6,000 people attended this free event yearly. The ethos of the Busking Festival Committee since its beginnings has been to provide as many free and fun activities as possible to the local people of Clonmel while showcasing the amazing musical talent of buskers and musicians,” said Simon Molloy. He said it was with a lot of regret that he had to make the decision to cancel the family fun day.
“The decision was taken due to a 33% cut in funding from Tipperary County Council in festival funding. That is why this family fun day cannot take place this year,” said Simon.

“I have had no reasonable explanation as to why our funding was cut by 33% as I am still in shock at this decision myself and can only assume that whomever made this decision has never attended our festival to see the large attendance and participation from the local community,” he said.
“The Clonmel busking festival may not be seen as a cultural festival by the powers that be but what can be more cultural than the celebration of music and busking,” he stated.
“I cannot understand why a festival that attracts such large crowds has had funding reduced to what was allocated prior to Covid,” added Simon.
The local authority issued the following statement on the matter when contacted by The Nationalist.
“Tipperary County Council invites applications annually under the Tipperary Festivals and Events Scheme across three categories, Community Events, Municipal Events and Premier Events. Applications are then assessed by a broadly based assessment panel made up Arts, Tourism, Sport, Heritage and Municipal District representatives against the criteria as set out in the guidelines for the Tipperary Festivals & Events Scheme. The Tipperary Festival Strategy 2008 – 2020 set out the model for the Tipperary Festivals & Events Scheme. The Clonmel Busking Festival was awarded an increase of 66% for 2022 on the 2021 allocation. Tipperary County Council is fully supportive of the Clonmel Busking Festival as demonstrated in 2021 when a late application was considered and supported under the terms of the scheme.”

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