Group who ‘destroyed’ Laois house during illegal rave plan Dublin New Year’s Eve event

Tickets costing €35 for ‘warehouse’ rave with DJs and a ‘fully stocked bar’ being sold online

The organisers of an illegal rave that caused extensive damage to Lisa Wilkinson's Co Laois house are planning another event in Dublin for New Year’s Eve.

 

A group of people who held an illegal rave that caused extensive damage to a rented Co Laois house are planning another event in Dublin for New Year’s Eve.

Videos from the rave, seen by The Irish Times, showed more than 80 people dancing without facemasks and with no social distancing.

The owner of the home was unaware of the rave, which took place on December 12th, and said extensive damage was caused to the property.

They had rented the property via Airbnb to an individual claiming he wished to rent the house for a weekend hiking trip with work colleagues.

Lisa Wilkinson, whose partner owns the home, said the property was “absolutely destroyed” after the rave.

She said the inside of the home was littered with empty beer cans and bottles, used nitrous oxide ‘laughing gas’ canisters, and other rubbish strewn across the floors.

A number of mostly empty bags, which appeared to have been used to carry other drugs, such as cocaine and ecstasy pills, were also found amid the mess.

The group behind the rave organised the Co Laois event via a private Instagram and Snapchat social media account.

Used nitrous oxide ‘laughing gas’ canisters, and other rubbish strewn across the floor. Photograph: Lisa Wilkinson
Used nitrous oxide ‘laughing gas’ canisters, and other rubbish strewn across the floor. Photograph: Lisa Wilkinson

The group has since advertised tickets for a rave in Dublin on New Year’s Eve, in breach of public health restrictions.

In a post on a private Instagram page last week, the group began selling €35 tickets to a rave in a Dublin “warehouse”, with techno and house DJs and a “fully stocked bar”.

People can only view the posts, or message the accounts, after requesting to follow the account and being approved.

People buy tickets through an online link and after providing proof of purchase are added into a WhatsApp group chat.

For the rave in Co Laois the organisers informed people an initial pick-up spot would be provided in the group chat, and from there attendees would be transported via coach to the location, which was not disclosed beforehand.

Speaking to The Irish Times, Ms Wilkinson said the house in Co Laois had been “utterly destroyed,” with furniture and crockery broken, and the entire house left smelling like “rancid beer.”

“The whole floor is a lovely tile floor that was buffered, and it just had mud, and grit and glass ground into it. They churned the whole garden around by doing doughnuts in the car, all the way around the property,” she said.

“I got cleaners up from Dublin who work for me ... it took us three days to clean the house. We cleaned up a skip full of rubbish,” she said. She estimated there had been thousands of euro worth of damage.

Under Level 3 restrictions in place at the time no organised indoor gatherings were permitted.

It is an offence to organise gatherings in contravention of public health guidelines, with fines ranging from €500 up to €2,500, or six months in prison on conviction.

The Garda Press Office did not respond to queries about whether a criminal investigation had been opened into the event.

A spokesman for Airbnb said it had “zero tolerance for this type of behaviour, and have removed the guest from the platform”.