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Dublin: 6 °C Tuesday 15 October, 2019
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Bob Geldof says he would accept Freedom of Dublin if it was reinstated

The paperwork and files from the Band Aid Trust is being transferred to the National Library of Ireland where it will be catalogued and exhibited.

LETTERS, PHOTOGRAPHS AND and charity records from the Band Aid archive are going to go on exhibition at the National Library of Ireland (NLI).

Founder of the 1984 fundraiser Bob Geldof said it came to Dublin because Ireland was “magnificent” and he felt support from the entire country.

When the Band Aid Trust closed its offices in 1991, it put all its paperwork and files into a 100-square foot storage unit in London.

This collection will now be transferred to the NLI, where it will be catalogued, preserved, selectively digitised and exhibited.

The archive includes:

  • Hundreds of letters from private individuals – including many children and teenagers – mostly handwritten and on a range of personal writing paper
  • Letters, often witty and revealing, from well-known public figures
  • Publicity materials, including press cuttings and photographs
  • Donations of objects, including artwork, poetry and musical recordings
  • Reports of projects in Africa, funded by the Trust since 1985
  • Trust correspondence – between Trust members and with third parties, including donors, governments, shipping companies, other charities, broadcasters, etc.

Money still coming 

Band Aid’s Do They Know It’s Christmas?, co-written by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure, is one of the most popular Christmas songs ever released and has been generating royalties for the Band Aid Trust every Christmas since its release in 1984.

Geldof said money still comes into the Band Aid Trust in lots of ways, “Many people die and leave us money.

Three weeks ago we made €675,000 for a Hollywood movie that played three seconds of the Christmas song so the money keeps coming and we keep being active and monitoring.

Asked what he think when he hears the song being played in shops at Christmas, Geldof said, “What I do think is – there’s more money in the bin.”

bob 356_90532577 Source: Sam Boal via RollingNews.ie

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said, “Band Aid was a milestone of that era. It showed Ireland and in particular an Irishman taking the lead in tackling hunger and injustice, and it built on the work of so many missionaries and NGOs, many of whom continue to fight global hunger.”

Freedom of Dublin 

Geldof drew media attention across Ireland and the UK last month when he visited City Hall to hand back his award as part of a “PR stunt” to have the honour stripped from Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi over the treatment of the Rohingya muslims in Myanmar.

Dublin City Council voted to expunge his name from the Roll of Honorary Freemen of the city after he publicly handed back the award.

When asked if he’d like the Freedom of the City back, he said:

That’s up to the council to do. They have a bee in their bonnet about me, everybody does.

“It’s your own town and the people wanted you to have it so it was a wrench to give it back to ask the council, who were not prepared to take away a mass murderer’s honour and my feeling was that that besmirched everyone, in fact it besmirched the honour itself and therefore the people of Dublin.

They did as I asked and so it’s over. In my statement I said I’d like it back if you do this, but if not, so be it. So apparently it’s ‘so be it’.

BOB GELDOF 758A8207_90529132 Bob Geldof in Dublin City Hall before handing back his Freedom of the City of Dublin Source: Eamonn Farrell via RollingNews.ie

Asked if he’s happy that Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi no longer has the Freedom of Dublin over his action, he said:

“I personally think that has restored the honour of all the people who were on it and restored the meaning of being given the Freedom of the City.

I have the Freedom of the City of London, I have the Freedom of the city of Newcastle, cities in Australia, New Zealand, I have some in America, Belgium but not my hometown but it’s fine.

“What I object to is people making up that I’m disgusted and furious – I’m not. It’s completely up to them.

Sinn Féin have a bee in their bonnet about me and the insults, the personal insults were water of a duck’s back – but lads, get a grip you know, grow up.

Asked if he would accept it if it was reinstated, Geldof said: “Of course I would, yea.”

Read: Councillors vote to strip Aung San Suu Kyi of the Freedom of Dublin>

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