Wedding Talk

From the archives: Twenty years ago, Dublin's Temple Bar tried to ban hen and stag parties

Imagine that

As Leopold Bloom in James Joyce's Ulysses posed the puzzle - can you cross Dublin without passing a pub? - a more modern version would perhaps be: can you make it through Temple Bar without encountering a stag party?

Chances are on the weekend anyway you'll be hard pushed to make it from Ha'penny Bridge to the Central Bank without spotting at least one pre-wedding party taking in the sites and sounds of Dublin's most popular location to indulge an old fashioned pub crawl.

But did you know that twenty years ago, Temple Bar was to be a hen and stag free zone?


"Every weekend thousands fly in to Dublin from Britain for short breaks, many on the cheap fares offered by Ryanair. Many are young parties of English, Scots and Welsh on stag and hen weekends," the article dating back to November 13th 1998 reads.

"However, instead of enjoying the usual craic in the 34 pubs and bars on the stag/hen circuit in Dublin's Temple Bar, as of tonight they will be greeted by signs saying 'No hen or stag parties catered for in these premises'."


According to the article, the dramatic decision to ban the groups came after a study by Temple Bar Properties (TBP) showed that the 'unruly element' was discouraging 13% of potential tourists, which amounted to a potential revenue worth £57m per year."

At the time the study estimated the total spend by hen and stag party attendees to be £100 per day (including accommodation!) and suggested that "Bord Failte and other marketing agencies should think again about highlighting 'Dublin pubs' and 'Dublin as a party capital' in the UK".

Of course the exile didn't last long, with pubs the weekend after the 'ban' was put in place continuing to sport an open door policy towards pre-wedding parties.

Read more: Hens and stags still stalk the streets of Temple Bar