Community saddened over closure of beloved Dublin LGBTQ+ bar All My Friends

The venue said that the Irish taxation system combined with the costs of operating a small business was all too much to bear.

Customers outside All My Friends pub. They are socialising with drinks on a dark night.
Image: Facebook: All My Friends

On Thursday, January 4, Dublin LGBTQ+ bar All My Friends announced its immediate closure. The Meath Street venue opened in the summer of 2022 and was known for its warm and welcoming atmosphere, as as well as for hosting events, markets and exhibitions for local queer creatives.

In a statement published on Instagram, the management team wrote: “It is with a heavy heart that we have to announce the closure of allmyfriends with immediate effect.

“We have done our best to keep bringing the good times to the Liberties but the punitive taxation system that currently exists in this country combined with the ever increasing costs associated with operating a small, independently owned business have just become too much to bear.”

They continued by thanking all of their customers who have supported their journey and “danced and laughed” through many memorable moments, as well as “all the wonderful staff who have been the lifeblood of the pub”.

“The hardest part is not getting a chance to say goodbye to you all and knowing that under different circumstances things could have been so different.

“Please get out and support small business, even if our government doesn’t want to,” the statement concluded.



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A post shared by All My Friends (@allmyfriendspub)

The news of All My Friends’ closure was met with resounding disappointment from the LGBTQ+ community, with many expressing their sadness on social media.

Photographer Hazel Coonagh who exhibited her work in the venue, commented, “I’m so sorry to hear. Thank you guys for everything you did for the community”.

Drag artist Anziety wrote, “This is devastating news,” while burlesque dancer Scarlett Van Tassel said, “I’m so tired of seeing our smaller spaces being punished by prohibitive tax rates while faceless multinationals are given a haven.”

Dublin Bears shared, “We are so sorry to hear this news! John and staff, you have been very supportive of Dublin Bears since the day you opened. Your warm, friendly management and staff worked so hard and created an alternative and relaxed oasis in the heart of the Liberties.

“We held some great events there and also enjoyed popping in with friends for a pint and a bop. Thank you for your energy, creativity and warm welcome. You will be sadly missed.”

Author and journalist Aoife Moore expressed, “I am so so sad about this. My lovely neighbours. Such an amazing pub and so needed in these times”.

Similarly, comedian Shane Daniel Byrne described the closure as “such awful news”.

Another customer shared, “I have to say, yous were the only new bar that had been so welcoming to the Liberties locals. Any background, any age, any person, you made them feel so comfortable.

“My grandmother who is 81 and has lived in the liberties all her life absolutely praised All My Friends. Yous will be missed,” she added.

A different commenter wrote, “What a shame. It was such an amazing community space that the city sorely needed. Well done on the buzz you create in such a short space of time, and so sorry it ended this way.”

Someone else said, “This is so messed up. So sad to see you go especially under such circumstances. Thank you for the joy you brought to the community”.

Finally, one customer concluded, “you were a queer gem of the city”.

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