Public pays for €15,000 Mansion House beer bill as Dublin mayor uses up Diageo allowance twice

Taxpayers in Ireland have paid for €15,000 worth of beer at Dublin’s Mansion House after the city’s lord mayor wiped out his free allowance for a second time this year.

(Photo: Diageo)

Lord mayor Nial Ring took up his office in July last year, but managed to spend his entire free beer allowance by January.

Diageo provides 120 kegs of beer each year – equivalent to more than 10,500 pints – to the lord mayor’s office as part of a long-standing tradition, and agreed to supply an additional 30 kegs after it was requested by Mansion House after the first instalment ran out at the start of 2019, but the mayor’s office stripped through the additional stores by 21 March, reports the Times.

Dublin council confirmed to the paper that it had bought another 71 kegs for €15,280, which includes 45 kegs of Guinness; 16 of Carlsberg; six of Budweiser; and four of Smithwick’s.

In February, Ring said he was “delighted” that his office had ran out of beer, claiming it was justified by the number of visitors he receives at Mansion House.

“We’re actually having a huge number of things in the Mansion House including parties in the evening time and I’ve had over 16,000 members of the public into the Mansion House and 8,000 at evening events,” he said on Today with Sean O’Rourke on RTÉ Radio One, “I want to say thank you to the people of Dublin.”

“I think I’ve enough looking at the kegs down in the basement,” he added during the segment earlier this year. “I think I’ve enough until St. Patrick’s Day and we’ll review it again. I won’t apologise for reaching out to the people of Dublin. I’m delighted we’ve run out of beer.”

It is expected that, by the end of his tenure in June this year, the lord mayor will have served up around 23,850 pints to guests at Mansion House.

Ring continued to justify his beer spend when questioned by the Times this week.

“Thirty-five thousand people have visited the Mansion House so far this year. The beer is part of the entertainment which also [includes] afternoon tea for parties, including senior citizens,” he said. “I feel it can be justified as part of the overall budget that the city and the Mansion House runs on.”

A spokesperson for Diageo said its Saint James’s Gate facility “has been providing complementary beer to the Mansion House for almost 60 years,” in an emailed statement.

The provision, it added, is made “regardless of office-holder or their political orientation, to support the Mansion House to provide hospitality to a wide variety of groups with some of the city’s most iconic products.”

“Earlier this year at the request of the Mansion House we increased the cap on complementary kegs from 120 to 150 kegs for the current 12 month period.

The drinks giant said that it has not provided any more free kegs, but will “of course recommence with the provision of complementary product to the Mansion House for the next 12 month period, which begins on 1 July.”

2 Responses to “Public pays for €15,000 Mansion House beer bill as Dublin mayor uses up Diageo allowance twice”

  1. Eamon McLoughlin says:

    23,850 pints? That’s 65 a day – barely enough to keep a couple of fellas in Dublin happy. Get real Diago, blithering skinflints!!!

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