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Friday 1 December 2023 Dublin: 1°C
Christmas lights on Dublin's Grafton Street
Energy Crisis

The Christmas lights in Dublin will be turned off earlier each night this year

Eamon Ryan said earlier this month that local authorities were looking at the issue of Christmas lights this winter.

THE AMOUNT OF time Dublin city’s Christmas lights stay on for each day is set to be reduced this year amidst the growing energy crisis. 

Energy Minister Eamon Ryan said earlier this month that local authorities have been looking at the issue of Christmas lights on streets this winter.

When asked about Christmas lights for cities, towns and villages across the country, the Minister said: “I think local authorities are starting to look at that, they’re starting to consider every measure, but we’re not being prescriptive at that level yet.” 

Government sources said at the time that they would be very reluctant to give advice on such a measure as curtailing Christmas lights, stating that there will be questions about “how much of this is virtue signalling”, reiterating that it is unlikely Ireland will experience blackouts or brownouts this winter. 

City centre business group DublinTown, which operates Dublin’s Christmas lights, said it intends to run the lights this year, as it does every year. 

However, a spokesperson for the group said that the times during which the lights will be switched on each day will be curtailed. 

The timings for which the lights are turned on differ from street to street. Typically, lights would be on from 2pm, with the Grafton Street lights being turned on earlier, at 7am. They would remain on until 4am. 

However, DublinTown has indicated that the hours the lights are on will be pulled back this year, so that they all go on at 4pm and turn off at 2am each day. 

Commenting on Dublin’s Christmas lights, DublinTown CEO Richard Guiney said: “The past two years have been very difficult for us all. Children have had their Christmas experience curtailed during the pandemic. 

“We believe that it is important that memories are created and that people have a joyous festive season to look forward to.” 

Guiney said the group is “conscious of the displays’ low energy consumption and will consider the daily duration of the illumination”. 

“However, we have invested over the past 13 years in high quality, energy efficient lights that provide that additional sense of excitement throughout the city. The lights on our main streets have become iconic and we want to ensure that everyone has the chance to enjoy the city’s unique Christmas atmosphere at this special time of the year,” he said. 

Elsewhere in Europe, some cities are this year opting to go without Christmas lights altogether in certain areas. 

In Vienna, there will be no Christmas lights this year on the Ring, the famous boulevard that encircles the centre of the Austrian capital.

And the lights at the Christmas market in the square in front of the city hall will only be switched on at night and not at dusk, about an hour later, on average, every day.

 With reporting by Christina Finn and – © AFP 2022

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