Morning Focus – 02/01/2020

Our first Morning Focus of the new decade included discussions on a couple of old chestnuts.

First up, we discussed Taoiseach Leo Varadkar’s calls for a change to what he described as “archaic” licensing laws in Ireland. He said the current laws are too restrictive, and hurt the tourism trade, but doubt was expressed today as to whether these remarks will actually lead to any action.

Gavin was joined in studio by Darragh McAllister, Ennis Publican and Chair of the Clare Branch of the VFI, and also by William Cahir from Ennis Chamber. You can hear their conversation below:


Later in the show, we also discussed another long-running talking point. Mary Fogarty of the INMO and Seamus Ryan of the MidWest Hospital Campaign discussed new INMO figures showing almost 14,000 patients were on trolleys at University Hospital Limerick in 2019.

Another worrying set of statistics from last year revealed how there had been a 45% increase in the number of drivers killed on Irish roads. A fall in the number of deaths of passengers and pedestrians meant that the total number of road deaths in Ireland stood at 148, with six of those recorded in Clare. Gavin spoke with Superintendent Eddie Golden of the Garda’s Road Policing Unit.

We discussed the ‘lay of the land’ – in a political sense – with John Lee of the Daily Mail newspaper group, before a discussion about working in 2020. Alan Hickey of Peninsula Ireland talked about working remotely, and the employment market generally. You can hear his conversation with Alan below:

Next, as the government launches plans for Centenaries in 2020, Dr. Tomás MacConmara of Tuamgraney gave his insight into what Minister Josepha Madigan later admitted will be a “most challenging period.” You can listen back to that conversation below.

The show finished with our own Brian Flynn giving us the story behind Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody. Morning Focus returns on Friday from 9:00.