#OTD in 1981 – The Stardust Ballroom in Artane, Dublin goes up in flames; forty-eight young people are killed and more than 100 are injured.

Stair na hÉireann/History of Ireland

Forty-eight young people die in a fire at the Stardust club in Artane, Dublin. After sitting for 122 days and hearing evidence from three hundred and sixty-three witnesses, a government report found that the fire was ‘probably started deliberately,’ a finding long deemed contentious. The 2009 Report of Reopened Enquiry found that “on a prima facie basis:

(1) that neither the Tribunal nor the Committee have identified any evidence which can establish the cause of the fire;

(2) that the new and other evidence relied upon by the Committee at its highest merely establishes that the fire began in the roof space but does not establish its point of origin or cause.

Christy Moore was renowned for performing socially conscious songs that covered topics ranging from Travellers’ rights to the conflict in Northern Ireland. No stranger to controversy, Moore’s emotive ballads about the hunger strikes of 1981 had been banished…

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