An attempt to boost the regeneration of Limerick by making it City of Culture 2014 has commenced with a bang - but not of the nature intended.
What was a huge opportunity to showcase all that is good about Limerick and its rich heritage has descended into a very public and unseemly row involving those organising the event. It commenced with the resignation of the Artistic Director, Karl Wallace, as the year had barely begun, and climaxed this week with the resignation of the project’s CEO, Patricia Ryan and the very serious allegation that Ms Ryan’s telephone has been hacked.The events have left many aghast. It has created a major schism between the artistic community and organisers of the Year of Culture in Limerick and it has to be a serious source of embarrassment to the vast majority of the people of the city. But, while it is precisely the start to the Limerick National City of Culture 2014 no one would have wished for, all is not lost. It is now time to regroup, re-appoint new blood to the vacant positions, and proceed with the very many events which had been planned to portray the very best of Limerick. Events of the last few days must be consigned to the past and all of the groups who had committed themselves to this project must now work together to deliver a programme which has been deemed vital to the rebranding of Limerick. To do otherwise would be extremely damaging and a huge disservice to Limerick and its citizens.