Just South William



South William Street, Dublin 2.

Members of the Garda’s Public Order Unit disperse crowds of mainly young people with a baton charge on newly-pedestrianised South William Street to surrounding areas.

Seems proportionate.



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107 thoughts on “Just South William

  1. Diddy

    Baton charging young people for having an outdoor summer. Major policy F up here. Open everything now

    1. Micko

      Absolutely Diddy. Open up

      Almost every single day for the last two months, the vast majority of cases were in people under 45. Usually 75%+

      Yet still the number of dead in that age group hasn’t got any bigger. (Pre cyber hack anyway)

      Why are NPHET ignoring these facts? Are the vulnerable not safe now with the vaccine?

      Why are we crapping on these kids? – again!!

      This age group are generally not at risk, yet we treat them like this.

      This is a direct result of Houlahans finger wagging last weekend.

      Government is an utter shambles.

      We need to start saying no to this crap and stop following these ridiculous draconian measures.

      1. Nigel

        Why do you ask the same questions over and over again when they’ve been answered over and over again? Talk about refusing to face facts.

        – It’s brilliant that the mortality rate is so low for that narrow period but mortality isn’t the only outcome, there are also serious long-term chronic conditions.
        – also that’s just two months, and just here, hardly exhaustive.
        – Nor is mortality with one group the only issue, since it’s a highly contagious disease and if lots of young people have it, it makes it easier for more at-risk groups to get it.

        Not that any of that excuses heavy-handed police stupidity like this, but if you wanted a better government in charge you should have voted one in.

        1. Micko

          Yeah. That’s all great Nigel. Blah blah blah.

          I think you’re talking absolute rubbish there.


          after the absolute disaster that other thread turned into yesterday – I’m not doing it today.

          We disagree. Let’s leave it there.

          G-luck and have a good bank holiday

          1. Nigel

            I don’t care if you think it’s rubbish, my opinion of your ability to critically asess information is not high, I’m just increasingly contemptuous of the faux-naivity of endlessly repeating questions and pretending they haven’t been answered ad nauseum. Also, isn’t it funny that pandemic-truthers piously praise the ideal of ‘opposing viewpoints’ but a thread where opposing viewpoints are argued out is a ‘disaster? A baton charge is a disaster. If a debate where your point of view is challenged is also a disaster, maybe you need to examine your own point of view more closely.

          2. Micko

            It was a disaster for everyone else who uses this site.

            Not all about us, now is it. ;)

          3. Micko


            I just don’t really want it to be doing a thing where we get into a back and forth every single time and dominate the entire thread for everyone else.

            It’s not productive. And it just annoys other people on the site into not commenting.

            We differ in literally every single point we each raise on almost every subject and I don’t think it’s worthwhile.

            So let’s not. Fair?

            We’re never gonna agree and us trying to outdo each other isn’t really communicating. It’s just grandstanding.

            You ignore me and I’ll do the same for you.

          4. Nigel

            You don’t want to defend your point of view? That’s your prerogative. I reserve the right to comment when I have something to say.

          5. Hank

            Does arguing give you an election Nigel? Genuine question.
            Just wondering why anyone would spend so much of their time arguing on the Internet. It reminds me of the people who wake in the morning and eagerly search for something to be offended by just so they can demand for it to be cancelled.

          6. Nigel

            Is this your first time on the internet? Or with people? Is people arguing different points of view not a part of the expression of freedom of thought and robust intellectual exchange? I thought we didn’t like echo chambers and groupthink and sheeple unquestioningly accepting whatever they’re told? Is arguing about something cancelling it now?

      2. DaithiF

        Micko, I’d say the reality is that you’re likely to be a polite, kind, reasonable person out there in the ‘real world’, but honestly you’ve absolutely poisoned the comment sections here on BS for almost a year now.

        Nigel has consistently, articulately and comprehensively counter-argued all of your spurious, sometimes laughable assertions based on a slew of cherry-picked comment and conjecture from the most biased sources. I don’t know where he gets the patience (or time) but he’s a critical bullwark between the tide of venal effluent you’ve been spraying all over this site.

  2. ce

    “Just” William and his mates… lots of mates…

    Some of them look so young… maybe I’m just old…

    Going to be a looooong weekend… lots of overtime for the Gardi

  3. Walter Ego

    Open everything up when most the over 50’s haven’t even had their second jab yet? Yeah that makes perfect sense alright. These numpties haven’t realised that even they can catch this virus and while most of them might survive, they could have to deal with the effects of long covid or indeed pass it on to a vulnerable person. And who picks up the strain in the health service? The over stretched health workers and the tax payer, that’s who. But hey as long as the little darlings have their their pints, pints, pints, shur that’s all that matters.

    1. Diddy

      Walter…what is the messaging here? Restart life/ economic activity? Or wait until the over 50s are double vaxed. I do believe it’s the former. The government can’t have its cake and eat it. They In Leinster house are to blame here and you are a pious pain in the …

      1. Walter Ego

        It’s called personal responsibility. The pandemic is NOT over. We are on our way out of it but if you act like it’s over and gather in large groups without social distancing, without masks. Share drinks, drugs, shifts or whatever else you fancy, you not only put your life or health at at risk you also put others.I understand the need to get out and socialise. But FFs not in large groups like this. And it’s not being pious, it’s called having a brain and seeing the larger picture.

        1. Diddy

          It’s called what is not forbidden is allowed Walter. The government set the rules of the game. They have allowed the conditions for this to happen. They expected al fresco outdoor doing ala one of their developer buddies new property brochures, what they got was Youth culture. A culture that has been very obedient for over a year.

          1. Walter Ego

            And was i defending the Government here? No i wasn’t, i’m saying that these citizens, like the rest of us have a personal responsibility. We’ve all been obedient for over a year and made personal sacrifices and some of us can see a light at the end of the tunnel. But these selfish fools are blocking the way and may cause another surge. But hey as long as they have their fun. Or am i just being pious?

          2. goldenbrown

            “They expected al fresco outdoor doing ala one of their developer buddies new property brochures”

            THIS was as far as their vision of a reopening stretched for sure, nail on the head there, 100% THIS!!

            your overlords on Kildare Street decided to reopen life but as per usual in a vague confusing haphazard let-the-market-decide way

            I see it all the time in the corporate world…..beautiful floaty high level plans but with very little (sometimes nil) operational substance and support underneath

            I don’t know how anyone is surprised however – you’ve a bunch of very comfortable very well paid let-them-eat-cake! oul lads so far out of touch with the citizenry who employ them that they think a €500k house is affordable and whom usually suffer little consequence for their actions and inactions, at the control panel of your life!

            I see a vast majority of very well behaved compliant kids, whose life has been put on hold for heading into two years now because of a largely invisible enemy (HUGE formative years maybe too easily forgotten if you’re in your 30’s and 40’s all tied up in your domestic and work arrangements and pressures)

            finally let off the leash BUT without a solid civic operational plan to keep everyone safe….and now taking the convenient blame

            an unbelievable opportunity missed too, we have some of the top gigs/ents management people in the entire planet in this country to consult with and months to plan this and the best we could do was to throw fences at places and send in the poor Guards (many not much older, experiencing similar life interruptions and domestic struggles to own €500k homes as those kids there) for the bitta optics??

            Leave Those Kids Alone!!

        2. Cui Bono?

          Walter – the pandemic is over. It’s summer now and the winter season of 20/21 is over. The deaths are as flat as they can be.

          Have you not bothered to look at the data?

          Also, most 50-70 year olds are not at risk to covid and long-covid is so rare it’s nothing to worry about. Check the actual risks here https://qcovid.org/

          1. Lilly

            ‘long-covid is so rare’

            What makes you think this? You have no idea about the extent of long Covid because the rates haven’t been collated. Judging by the long waiting lists for post-Covid clinics, it’s anything but rare. Medics don’t seem to have a clue how to treat it and advocates are thin on the ground.

        3. Jay

          You do know that there has been around 250-300 cases which involved outdoor transmission in 16 months, yes?

    1. George

      Do you think Michael Martin ordered it? Cop on. I’ll bet the Gardai kicked everyone out of Stephen’s Green at the same time at 8pm again with no crowd management measures.

  4. ce

    So many 14-18 year olds in those pictures not drinking – good on them for not having a life that solely revolves around the drink…

    Also… and call me naive… but wouldn’t it be better to wear masks and make yourself less identifiable in pictures… avoid the 5G surveillance and all that…


  5. K. Cavan

    Please, please, please, after 15 months in Lockdown, can’t we just stay put for a few more months? NO…..which means NO.

  6. ce

    When 4 E’s become 5

    Engage, Explain, Encourage, Enforce…Eviscerate

    …later folks of the mask and non-mask wearing persuasion…

    1. Kevin Quinn

      Sandymount Green is like Electric Picnic for yummy mummies and their kids, and it’s been like that for weeks every time the sun comes out. Strangely, there haven’t been any Garda baton charges yet…

  7. Praetorian

    What is the attraction to South William Street….?? nothing is open,it has zero attraction…..it never had crowds.
    All i see is 15,16,17 yr old ferral vermin looking for aggro.
    Water canons not batons.

    1. George

      Near Stephen’s green which closes in the evening, not much traffic, and it has some pubs on it which were serving takeaway drinks.

    1. U N M U T U A L

      as the saying goes…
      “you can always tell who came to start a riot by how they dress”

      1. Unreal


        It’s inevitable I guess but sad that Broadsheet is now attracting these sort of vermin comments as well

  8. Slightly Bemused

    without trivialising anything about this, may I just say that is a great headline

  9. GiggigyGoo

    Would you look at those brave men, lined up with their batons resting on their shoulders, in a threatening and provocative manner, at the ready to attack? Ready to attack youngsters who are not causing trouble, as far as I can see. They are the ones causing and fueling disorder. Public Order Unit?
    Police state. Courtesy of Garda Harris and his FG mateys.

  10. Toto

    I understamd the covid issues etc but baton charging teenagers having a bit of craic is not ok. Never mind the complete mixed messagimg of an outdoor summer. But there is no justification for this approach by the gardai.

    I fear where ireland is headed

  11. Lilly

    Has it not been established that it’s highly unlikely to transmit Covid outdoors? Either tell people they can have an outdoor summer or tell them to stay at home. Batons are not a good look for our keepers of the peace.

    1. millie bobby brownie


      The mixed messaging and seeming lack of any real planning or organisation is very frustrating.

      1. GiggigyGoo

        We’ve gone from on the beat Gardai patrolling the streets to licensed boot boys (with flak jackets mind you) arriving like the cops in The Blues Brothers, in many vehicles. To terrorize citizens, to threaten with no come back if they beat people at will.
        The crowd turned on the Police in the UK recently. Much more of this Harrisment, and the same will happen here. There was an inkling of it with Rocket Man.

    2. Zaccone

      Yes. Even the HSE released a report last month that said as much. Apparently only 0.1% of cases of covid spread in Ireland to date have been from outdoors.

      So essentially unless you’re licking someone who has symptomatic covid you’re very very unlikely to catch it outdoors.

      Which makes the Gardai baton charging teenagers for standing on the street having a beer all the more ridiculous. These kids aren’t going to not drink next weekend as a result, they’re just going to drink indoors instead…

  12. H

    The mention of baton charging reminds me of a very funny story. A friend of mine had his wedding reception in the Banqueting House on Whitehall in London. Unfortunately, his wedding day coincided with the poll tax riots. One of the guests tells a story of sitting in a serene, opulent room listening to the dulcet tones of a grand piano while enjoying a sumptuous meal, then glancing out the window only to see the police baton charging the mob! Two more contrasting scenes would be hard to imagine.

    1. Centerest Dad

      I don’t think it would be that hard to imagine but I’m just built different I guess

    2. bertie blenkinsop

      I had a similar experience one New Years Eve at a party in The Royal Dublin watching Gangs of New York unfold out the window on O’Connell Street.

    3. Redundant Proofreaders Society

      While a young raver in the early nineties in Britain, the Criminal Justice & Public Order Act was introduced in ’94 to clamp down on social gatherings of ‘yoofs’. It wasn’t during a pandemic, but it was during a time of fear and loathing by the Establishment of drugs, raves, parties and the young. The cops would storm in on horses with batons and tear gas to break up what at most times was a harmless bonfire with a bit of dancing on public land. It only made us more defiant, more determined to gather, more in love with the branding and labelling thrown upon us. It certainly instilled a lasting apathy and hatred for authority amongst the English kids, and many of them deserted their homeland for the wilds of West Cork, Cornwall and similar such regions known for bohemian life and lax social norms.

      Our point is, the more a State marginalises and blames the youngsters, the more they’ll rebel. It’s as old as time. The Sth William Street lads are loving the publicity, and will keep at it for the sheer devilment.

      1. Casual Observer

        I was there, in 1990s Britain.
        We were always on the run, but we also knew they didn’t want to catch us. Too much paperwork….

        They just chased us, at a slow pace… tried to wear us out.

        This is a different game.

  13. Frank

    I’m surprised nobody blamed Sinn Fein yet. allow me… the mask slips, they haven’t gone away you know, dissident involvement, shadowy figures

  14. Unreal

    Sorry guys these kids are being set upon precisely because they are the kids of the establishment
    We would not want the next generation thinking they can overturn the established order

    1. Donald McCarthy

      The RUC, they cross our border, they take our top job in policing, they help with evictions and some of them are maybe fine people.

  15. Nigel

    Even without the covid factor, if the only way you can think of to break a harmless (but, arguably, disruptive, if you really have to justify breaking it up) spontaneous street-party on a city street is a baton charge, then everyone involved really needs to be fired.

        1. Formerly Known As @ireland.com

          I have to agree. It is counterproductive. If they were concerned, close off the streets in advance and limit the number that can enter the area. I know it would be difficult. Otherwise, leave them alone for that night.

          1. Nigel

            I’ll bet there are entire manuals from multiple countries describing how members of a civilian police force can enter an area where this kind of street party is underway and break it up and move the participants on in entirely non-violent ways, leaving everybody happy and reasonable and even feeling like grown-ups. But that’s the sort of initiative that gets cut first in an austerity drive leaving us with the core institutional culture that baton charges are sexy and and the height of good policing.

          2. ARK

            I don’t know anyway to avoid such crowds other then to not let them gather in the first place which is what they did last week

          3. Nigel

            The weather is getting better and everyone’s talking about reopening and the reduced chances of transmission in the open air – after a bloody year of lockdown this was inevitable. We’re just really bad at preparing for the inevitable.

        2. scundered

          It does actually, if you behave like an irresponsible numpty then you deserve the full force of whatever the Gardai can do, they were asked to disperse and ignored it, so they got what they deserved, maybe if you lost a few loved ones to Covid you might think differently, how many people need to die for you to get it?

          1. Nigel

            I don’t need to vent my grief or anger via the proxy of unnecessary police brutality. That is not healthy or fair.

          2. scundered

            Did you miss the bit about the crowd ignoring demands by the Gardai? Force was therefore necessary, and boy did the snowflakes cry

          3. Scundered

            And all the kids had to do was obey the order in the first place to disperse, why are you excusing scangers? Is this your clan?

  16. Cú Chulainn

    Stephen Donnelly said what happened in the South William Street area “was nothing short of a disgrace”.

    “Nobody has the right to attack our garda, absolutely nobody … it in no way represents our country,” he said.

    Stephen the spoof needs to get out from behind his new fence. Everyone knows it is always the guards that start the trouble.

    1. Casual Observer

      I’ve known a fair few Gardaí over my time.
      They were all different, but they’re all the same.

    2. scundered

      Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
      the only reason the Gardai were there was to disperse the crowd, if the kids hadn’t made the conscious decision to ignore that request there would have been no violence, it’s really not that difficult a sequence of events to understand

  17. D

    There needs to be a young adult lobby group. Equivalent of Age Action for the grey hair mob.

    Lockdown done terrible damage to our youths. SF just needs to open their arms and youths will run to them.

    FFG fell on their sword

    1. Casual Observer

      Leave the grey hair mob; alone,
      Or show some respect…
      We invented The Internet and Rap Music.

      It’s the bald-headed men you should be fighting with.

  18. Des

    100 years of policing by consent gone, thanks to an ex. RUC commissioner who seems to thinks its ok to baton charge innocent people.

    If there are troublemakers arrest them, noone has a problem with that

  19. Des

    Actually, this is exactly the way the blueshirts behaved while doing the bidding of the crown.

    Maybe nothing has really changed, fg=blueshirts=gardai= facism.

  20. Casual Observer

    Tell me about it Brother.
    Absolute thugs.

    We didn’t have cameras on our phones when this first happened..
    We didn’t even have phones, because they hadn’t been invented yet….

    All changed now.

      1. Casual Observer

        No way…
        Cops wearing ID badges?

        I’m reminded of a scene from Blazing Saddles.

        (Not the one about the beans.)

  21. George

    They are pretty close to licking each other. None of the data on transmissibility outdoors is based on being crammed together like this. Even without covid-19 though this is out of control and a massive failure of crowd management by the OPW and Gardai again. Kicking large crowds out the stephen’s green every evening is going to cause this.

    1. scundered

      Don’t blame the Gardai, they didn’t start this…. If you resist requests to disperse then you should realise you are starting serious trouble by that very action, fair play to the Gardai for showing that bad actions will bring swift punishment

      1. George

        Scundered, you’ve done a fantastic job of missing the point of my post. Why are you replying to me with references to requests to disperse? My point in my post it that the Gardai move people out of Stephen’s green creating these excessive crowds. They’re trying to disperse a crowd they created in the first place.

        1. Scundered

          Well they clearly didn’t bother dispersing, just moved down the road, it’s not rocket science to know the rules on how to gather safely, by being a few metres apart from others, the kids are the problem here just wanting a fight, well let them have it so and arrest every one of them

    2. Joe

      The FFFGGP joke government had months along with the non-elected and non accountable eejits in Dublin City Council to prepare for the reopening and the best they could do was to pedestrianise streets.
      DCC cynically used the reopening excuse to further their anti traffic plans, screwing up the city centre and barring disabled people from access. It has come home to bite them now. The Council’s CEO should be sacked forthwith.

      Garda management? Garda mismanagement more likely, it really demonstrates the sheer clown like ineptness of what passes for Garda management when they already have had prior warning of what happens when they utterly fail in their job of preventing all day alcohol consumption and overcrowding in a simple to police street.
      They should be sacked along with the thugs who baton charged the public when they were exiting the area.

      These scenes here amply demonstrate the Gardai’s failure to appropriately police a small street

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