Thursday, December 12, 2019

Boyle actor Chris O’Dowd has offered up his driving skills to support a new pilot initiative.

Social Spin aims to provide a safe and sociable option to get people to and from the pub.

The initiative comes from a group of Kerry publicans with support from Guinness and the Vintners Federation of Ireland.

Social Spin has seen more than 70 volunteer drivers throughout Causeway and Faha sign up to get behind the wheel of a newly bought community car to drive people too and from the pub in place of drinking.

It is aimed that the initiative will be in operation from 5pm to closing time.

Pub-goers can either call or text the dedicated ‘Social Spin’ number when they want to meet people in the pub.

Chris O’Dowd and the Social Spin community car. Picture: Julien Behal

There is no charge for the use of the service, but people will have the opportunity to give a maximum voluntary contribution of €5 on any given evening.

“Socialising is the fabric that knits our community in Faha together, and fewer people meeting up in a social setting began to impact the atmosphere in the area,” said Sean O’Mahony, owner and publican at Faha Court Pub.

“We knew something had to be done, so we bought a community car, set up a dedicated mobile number and asked people to volunteer to drive their friends and neighbours to and from the pub.”

Roscommon native Chris O’Dowd is one of those helping to provide awareness of the scheme.

The Bridesmaids actor got behind the wheel in Faha in a show of support.

“Having grown up in Boyle, a rural area in Roscommon, I understand the significance of the local pub in bringing people together in a community,” said O’Dowd.

“It’s a social hub, somewhere to catch up and share stories.

“Socialising is part of our DNA and I think Social Spin is a brilliant and simple way of nurturing and celebrating this sociability, which is such an important part of our culture.”

Anyone over 25 and with a driving license can sign up and volunteer to drive the Social Spin car.


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