Limerick City of Culture position to be advertised in ‘coming days’

Alan Owens


Alan Owens

Interim CEO Mike Fitzpatrick: will stay on while 'public process' is finalised
THE position of director of Limerick City of Culture is due to be advertised in the coming days.

THE position of director of Limerick City of Culture is due to be advertised in the coming days.

A spokesperson confirmed that the position would be advertised “by Friday at the earliest”.

The decision to advertise the position was taken after a board meeting last Thursday, February 27 - more than seven weeks after interim CEO Mike Fitzpatrick was appointed.

Mr Fitzpatrick will remain in his existing role - an amalgam of the artistic director and CEO positions - “while this public process is being finalised”, it was confirmed.

Pressure was put on the board of City of Culture by PLAN - the Professional Limerick Artists Network - last week due to “concerns” the grouping had.

These issues were relayed to chairman Pat Cox. PLAN said that the “spirit of the letter was one of support rather than protest where we offered our professional assistance on its immediate challenges”.

Concerns were expressed by the representative body for artists over tenders, the marketing of smaller projects and general visibility of the project, communication and funding issues. In a reply, Pat Cox said that the board had been “appraised of your suggestions and similar suggestions emulating from pillar groups”.

“This matter is under active review,” said Mr Cox, who thanked the group for their “continued support”.

PLAN chairman John Greenwood and several other prominent members of the artistic community said this week that they wished to engage constructively with the project and did not intend to attend a meeting called by Richie Ryan for the Clarion Hotel this Thursday.

Mr Ryan has claimed that it is the “much anticipated follow on public meeting” to the stormy gathering that took place in early January, attended by 500 people and various members of the board of City of Culture.

Mr Ryan said the meeting will discuss if the project is “on track” and that he had invited the interim CEO and board members. However, a spokesperson for City of Culture said no such invitation was received.

“The wider Limerick cultural community, whose support for the Limerick City of Culture project is essential and much valued, is being kept informed regarding programme updates and any other relevant developments through the six pillar groups of the City of Culture,” said the spokesperson.

“We look forward to their continued support for the project and to maintaining regular contact with them.”