Ballinasloe Horse Fair officially cancelled for this year

Galway Bay fm newsroom – This year’s Ballinasloe Horse Fair has officially been cancelled.

Confirmation was given at this afternoon’s meeting of the Ballinasloe municipal district.

The Ballinasloe Horse Fair is the oldest and largest event of its kind in Europe, attracting close to 100 thousand visitors every year.

While many suspected this year’s event wouldn’t be going ahead for obvious reasons, there had been discussions on hosting some form of limited event.

But, the event is now officially off – following meetings between Galway County Council and the festival committee, as well as other stakeholders including Gardaí and public health.

The advice given and accepted was that a non-ticketed event, in which crowds or social distancing cannot be controlled, would not be viable in the context of Covid-19.

There was unanimous agreement among councillors in attendance that while disappointing to some, it is the right decision, given ongoing concern over variants of the virus.

Instead, it was acknowledged, there should be a renewed focus on next year’s landmark event – which marks the 300th anniversary of the iconic Ballinasloe Horse Fair.