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10th Dec 2019

‘Warm for Winter’ organiser has hung up more coats on the Ha’penny Bridge

Sarah Finnan

The organiser of the Warm for Winter campaign has hung even more coats on the Ha’penny Bridge.

This comes in response to a move by Dublin City Council which saw the coats removed from the bridge over health and safety concerns.

The initiative, organised by Paddy Fryers of Co Monaghan, saw people donate coats to be given to the homeless.

The coats appeared on Dublin’s Ha’penny Bridge alongside a poster bearing the message: “If you need one, then please take one. If you want to help, please hang one up”.

People were moved by the gesture, hailing it “fantastic idea” and a “great way to show kindness”.

However, many disapproved of Dublin City Council’s decision to collect the coats and redistribute them via their homeless services.

Concerned with pedestrian flow and congestion on the bridge, DCC asked people to consider donating coats directly to charity shops instead.

Speaking on the matter on Monday night, Paddy told RTÉ: “People are dying on the streets due to the cold…they don’t have the correct outside gear for this weather.”

“We’ve all got our old winter jackets, our Christmas jackets from last year, two years ago, that we might have worn for about a month, two months and then put in the drawer and never looked at again.

He added that “these are jackets that are almost like brand new, they could potentially be the reason that someone makes it through one of the coldest nights of the year.”

Public reaction to the initiative has been overwhelmingly positive, with people really getting behind the movement in any way they can.

Anyone wishing to help can do so by donating to charities such as the Dublin Simon Community or the Peter McVerry Trust.

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