By Andrew Atkinson
ALEX Higgins favourite watering hole reopened to the public on June 29 – 15 weeks since the last pint was pulled at the Boar’s Head in Dublin.
“You perhaps could be a little worried about social distancing, people having not been here for 15 weeks,” said owner Hugh Hourican.
Twice world snooker champion Higgins, whose 10th anniversary of his death is on July 24, frequented the bar, prior to passing away, aged 61.
“Alex came in regular with a red ribbon tied round his cue,” Hugh told me.
June 29 was the first day of Phase 3 of Ireland’s reopening, amid the coronavirus lockdown, with the Boar’s Head on Capel Street, reopening ahead of other bars.
“We want to show we are responsible publicans,” said Hugh, who runs The Boar’s Head with his wife Ann, one of over 450 bars reopening in Dublin in July, with punters initially allowed to stay for a maximum of one hour 45 minutes.
Social distancing must be maintained, with no seating at the bar, and screening in situ between tables in some establishments.
Bars are scheduled to re-open on July 20, based on Covid-19 infections numbers remaining low in Ireland.
‘Hurricane’ Higgins was found dead in his flat, with the cause of death a combination of malnutrition, pneumonia, tooth decay and a bronchial condition.
“I always enjoyed Alex’s company when he called in. He is missed,” said Hugh, who has a signed memento photo of Higgins hanging in the bar.
*If I knew you were comin’ I’d ‘ave baked a Cake – The Alex Higgins story. A limited edition publication, in memory of Alex Higgins’s 10th anniversary of his death. £12 (+p&p) email author Andrew Atkinson at: firstname.lastname@example.org