HL Deb 25 July 1902 vol 111 c1258

My Lords, I beg to ask His Majesty's Government, with regard to the riot in the Phaenix Park, Dublin, concerning the military band, if inquiries into the said riot have been made, and the result thereof; and, if a band plays in the park on Sundays, whether the authorities will see that it is not interfered with, and that respectable citizens are allowed to enjoy the music in peace.


My Lords, the occurrences to which my noble friend refers took place on Sunday, 29th June. A large number of people, estimated at 5,000, assembled in the vicinity of the military band that was playing in the park. The great majority of these people were present to enjoy the music; but a small section, consisting of about 200 persons, made a hostile demonstration by hooting arid groaning after some items had been played. In consequence, the band was withdrawn. The circumstances, regrettable though they were, were not in the nature of a riot, and did not call for the active intervention of the police. Steps will be taken to ensure peace should the band play again in the park, and an attempt be made to interfere with it. But I understand that the military authorities have ordered that no military band shall play in the park in the future. I may inform the noble Earl that the police could not have dispersed the people by force for merely expressing disapproval of the band by groaning. I believe that the military band was engaged to play in the park by the Tramway Company, and that, while many of the people who showed their hostility were, no doubt, influenced by a spirit of disloyalty, others were influenced by the fact that no city or civilian band had been engaged.


I am glad to hear from the noble Earl that should the band again play in the park, steps will be taken to enable the respectable citizens of Dublin to enjoy the music in peace.