NI newly weds ordered by judge to take down wedding reception marquee

A couple who tied the knot in Co. Armagh on Wednesday have been instructed by a judge in the Republic of Ireland to remove a marquee that had been erected for their wedding reception.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 6:56 pm

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Gardai were at the scene to provide support to Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council.

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Last updated: Wednesday, 12 May, 2021, 16:57

A couple who had their wedding ceremony in Co. Armagh on Wednesday morning have been told they cannot erect a marquee outside the home of one their parents because of Covid-19 restrictions.

Judge Sinéad Ní Chulacháin instructed the newlyweds to take down the marquee after the issue was brought before the court by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council.

The marquee had been erected near the home of the groom’s parents (Mr and Mrs Connors) and was set to host 40 wedding guests at 6pm.

The father of the groom is reported to have said “I know all that. I know I’m breaching my tenancy but it is my son’s wedding and he has no other place to go,” when he was confronted by the authorities.

When asked to remove the marquee Mr. Connors said: “I can’t take it down. My son’s wedding is going ahead and I accept the consequences of not taking it down.”

The marquee has since been removed.

Covid-19 pandemic and millions of lives lost were entirely preventable WHO commissioned report concludes

The Covid-19 pandemic was entirely preventable a report commissioned by the World Health Organisation (WHO) has found.

The independent report was very critical of world leaders and states had they acted sooner many lives could have been saved.

The report calls for major changes so to avoid the crisis occurring again in the future.

The report was headed up by former Prime Minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a former president of Liberia.

“For some, it wasn’t until hospital ICU beds began to fill that more action was taken,” said Ms. Clark.

“And by then it was too late to avert the pandemic impact.

“What followed then was a winner takes all scramble for PPE and therapeutics.

“Globally, health workers were tested to their limits and the rates of infection, illness and death soared and continue to soar,” she added.

Boris Johnson announces public enquiry into Covid-19

The government will set up an independent public inquiry with statutory powers into the handling of the coronavirus pandemic, Boris Johnson has said.

The Prime Minister told MPs the inquiry would be able to take oral evidence under oath and will place “the state’s actions under the microscope”.

It comes as NHS sources told the PA news agency that people aged 38 and 39 will be able to book their Covid-19 vaccinations from Thursday morning in England.

Mr Johnson said: “So we will consult the devolved administrations before finalising the scope and detailed arrangements so that this inquiry can consider all key aspects of the UK response.

“This process will place the state’s actions under the microscope and we should be mindful of the scale of that undertaking and the resources required to do it properly.”

On the persistent threat of new variants, he added: “Should these prove highly transmissible and elude the protection of our vaccines, they would have the potential to cause even greater suffering than we endured in January. There is in any case a high likelihood of a surge this winter when the weather assists the transmission of all respiratory diseases and when the pressure on our NHS is most acute.”

He added: “So I expect that the right moment for the inquiry to begin is at the end of this period in the spring of next year, spring 2022.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves 10 Downing Street for the Houses of Parliament in London, to make a speech about the Covid-19 pandemic.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the Commons: “This inquiry must be able to look at the events of the last year in the cold light of day and identify the key issues that will make a difference for the future.

“Free to scrutinise every document to hear from all the key players and analyse and learn from the breadth of our response.

“That’s the right way, I think, to get the answers that the people of this country deserve and to ensure that our United Kingdom is better prepared for any future pandemic.”

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer responds after Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke about the Covid-19 pandemic in the House of Commons, London.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the Commons that a commission on Covid commemoration will be established.

He said: “There is a solemn duty on our whole United Kingdom to come together and to cherish the memories of those who have been lost.

“Like many across this Chamber, I was deeply moved when I visited the Covid Memorial Wall opposite Parliament. I wholeheartedly support the plan for a memorial in St Paul’s Cathedral, which will provide a fitting place of reflection in the heart of our capital.

“I also know that communities across the whole country will want to find ways of commemorating what we have all been through, so the Government will support their efforts by establishing a UK commission on Covid commemoration.

“This national endeavour above party politics will remember the loved ones we have lost, honour the heroism of those who have saved lives and the courage of frontline workers who have kept our country going, celebrate the genius of those who created the vaccines and commemorate the small acts of kindness and the daily sacrifice of millions who stayed at home buying time for our scientists to come to our rescue.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaking about the Covid-19 pandemic in the House of Commons, London.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer told the Commons: “Can I clearly welcome the independent inquiry into the pandemic and the establishing of a UK commission on Covid commemoration. Both are necessary, both will play an important part in learning the lessons and commemorating those we have lost.”

Sir Keir highlighted the difficulties experienced by families who have lost loved ones during the pandemic, including the lack of a chance to say goodbye or have a funeral in the way they wanted.

He said: “It is good that the Government is consulting the devolved authorities, of course it is. But the Government must also consult the families because this inquiry will only work if it has the support and confidence of the families.”

Sir Keir said the Government should also consult frontline workers.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaking about the Covid-19 pandemic in the House of Commons, London.

Public Health Agency refuse to say if any further cases of Indian Covid-19 variant

The Public Health Agency (PHA) has declined to say if any further cases of B.1.617 (Indian variant) have been detected in Northern Ireland since May 5.

We contacted the PHA on Tuesday to establish if any additional cases of B.1.617 had been detected since last week’s announcement that there were seven confirmed infections in Northern Ireland.

The PHA declined to answer our question and said we would have to wait for it to be announced on Thursday by Public Health England.

“Public Health England (PHE) publishes data on distribution of variants on a weekly basis each Thursday, which includes Northern Ireland data.

“The emergence of new strains is fully anticipated and the agency is prepared for dealing with this. The advice to the public remains the same – stick to guidelines and regulations and get vaccinated when eligible. If the agency assesses as things progress that it is necessary to take further actions, this will be fully communicated.

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