Leo Varadkar and beer

‘Double Bank-Holiday’ Paddy’s Weekend Prospect On Cards Says Leo

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Government ministers are reportedly considering the prospect of a “double bank holiday” in March to mark the second anniversary of the ongoing pandemic

Speaking on Today with Claire Byrne on RTÉ Radio 1, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said it would be inappropriate for a new bank holiday to be announced early next year given the current situation in hospitals, however a two-day bank holiday is on the cards for St Patrick’s Day to cover not just the annual March 17th national holiday, but March 18th as well.

The government had previously planned to announce a new bank holiday for St Brigid’s Day between 31 January and 5 February.

From 2023, however, it would likely swap to around February 1 to mark St Brigid’s Day.

Mr. Varadkar “Public holidays are quite disruptive for health service. We also want to make sure we are not having an additional public holiday when our hospitals are in a difficult situation.

One option we are looking at is the 18th of March. A double bank holiday and what we would do after that is a permanent bank holiday on St Brigid’s day,” he said.

Mr Varadkar last night told a private Fine Gael meeting that the current Covid wave looks to be plateauing at a worryingly high level.

The Covid trajectory is uncertain and “everything would be done to avoid another lockdown”, he said.