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Jobs on the line as Galway Community Circus faces closure amid insurance crisis

Twenty jobs could be lost and one of the flagship events for Galway 2020 put at risk at Galway Community Circus due to spiraling insurance costs.

The insurance rates for Galway Community Circus have risen dramatically in the past few years from €4,500 in 2016 to €15,886.50 in 2017.

This year the organisation has said that it was only able to receive one quote of €23,890 after months of searching, but that this excludes any aerial acrobatics or any activity above 1.5m.

This could jeopardise one of the flagship events for Galway 2020 due to take place next August ‘Wires Crossed – A Balancing Act for Europe’.

Over the course of three days 400 people of all shapes and sizes are due to cross the River Corrib on a tightrope with a balancing pole.

On top of the spectacle itself this event is meant to highlight the mental health crisis that has seen so many people lose their live in the river.

“We have been forced to accept this quote until we find a more suitable long-term solution.

“It is our intention to continue to work with our partners including Galway 2020, The Arts Council, Galway City Council, Alliance for Insurance Reform and Irish Street Arts, Circus and Spectacle Network to find a solution to this issue.”

Over 650 young people make use of the classes and other activities organised by Galway Community Circus.

They will lose out on these truly unique opportunities, and 20 jobs are at risk, unless a long term solution is found.

Classes were cancelled for young people, but have resumed this week save for any activities not covered by the new insurance.

CEO of Galway 2020 Patricia Philbin said that it’s unfortunate that an organisation providing physical and creative development, as well as dazzling audiences, has become a victim of the ongoing insurance crisis in Ireland.

“At a time when the eyes of the world turn towards Galway and Ireland, the future of companies and organisations producing amazing spectacles and ongoing community engagement programmes is at risk.”

She added that European Capital of Culture team will continue to work with the Community Circus and the wider sector to support the insurance reform needed for them to continue their work.

Briain Kelly
Email: news@galwaydaily.com
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