'Back with a bang': Jazz festival smashes records

It is estimated that at least €20m was spent in the local economy and that trade has surpassed previous years.
'Back with a bang': Jazz festival smashes records

Charlie Knighton on trombone with Hyde Park Brass, from Leeds, UK bringing jazz to the streets of Cork at Princess Street, Cork on Friday afternoon as the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival kicked off. Pic Larry Cummins

ORGANISERS of this year’s Guinness Cork Jazz Festival have said it smashed all records, with businesses delighted at the huge numbers attending, packing out venues, and delivering a much-needed spending boost to the city’s hospitality sector.

It is estimated that at least €20m was spent in the local economy and that trade has surpassed previous years.

“The majority of events sold out over the weekend so overall it was a great success,” said a spokesperson for the festival committee.

Kevin Herlihy, president of the Cork Business Association (CBA), said he had “never seen anything like it”.

“We are trading in the city centre for 22 years and this has by far been the best Guinness Cork Jazz Festival weekend ever. It’s a credit to the organisers to have put on such quality acts that drew in a massive crowd.

“After Covid, people are delighted to get out and about again. This sets us up nicely for a busy Christmas period ahead of us.

“The Guinness Jazz Festival was very much back with a bang this year and it was amazing to see it.

“To have it in full swing again after such a difficult time for both the music and hospitality industries really was a boost for everyone.

“It is testament to what can be achieved when support is given to both industries especially those who have never really fully recovered after the pandemic and credit is due to Diageo for giving the city such a huge boost at a time when it’s so badly needed.

“For many, it will help them through a difficult few months ahead. Cork city was well and truly alive and kicking again this weekend, roll on 2023,” said Mr Herlihy.

Philip Gillivan from the Shelbourne Bar on MacCurtain St said it was an “absolutely incredible” weekend.

“I think the Jazz this year was by far the best I’ve ever seen in my 26 years here in the Shelbourne. It delivered a huge boost to the local economy,” he said.

“Everybody benefits, from hairdressers to taxis, to burger bars to restaurants and cafés.”

Bastien Peyraud, general manager of the Imperial Hotel, said: “This year’s Guinness Cork Jazz Festival has brought so many more guests from abroad who came to experience this fantastic weekend in Cork city. The feedback on the whole experience for them has been extremely positive with many already rebooking for next year.”

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