Life in the Heart of the City

Mingle at the markets of The Liberties

Although its only a short distance from the city centre, The Liberties is its own distinctive city neighbourhood with its own special character. Many families have lived in the area for generations and today over 23,000 residents live within a 2km square area. The population is young, dynamic and increasingly international.

Significant new developments are now planned to regenerate housing and develop new student accommodation, improve streets and create new parks to make The Liberties a more attractive and sustainable community in which to live and mingle.

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Street Improvements

Improving the quality of streets and public spaces in The Liberties is the focus of a major investment plan by Dublin City Council. An ambitious series of projects are delivering new community parks for The Liberties at Cork Street and Bridgefoot Street, improvements to many existing open spaces, streetscape renewal and the creation of a major new destination space at Newmarket.

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Retail & Markets

mingle in the shops of the liberties

Traditionally one of the city’s best-known market streets, Thomas Street remains a centre for family-run independent retailers and local specialists and is a great place to mingle and shop. Meath Street typically comes to life at weekends when the vibrant street market takes over. The more discerning bargain-hunter can browse the antique shops and galleries of Francis Street – Art & Antiques Quarter.  Meanwhile historic Newmarket is rapidly reinventing itself as a centre for craft food and drink producers and hosts the monthly Dublin Flea Market.

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Restaurants & Bars

A great place in which to mingle day or night

The Liberties has a great (and growing) selection of cafés and eateries to suit every taste by day: trendy baristas and traditional tea drinkers are all catered for here. And with its close proximity to the city centre, The Liberties also has a buzzing nightlife scene. Thomas Street acts as a spine of quality restaurants, bars and venues, while side streets are dotted with traditional pubs, making this a great place to mingle during the evening. Check out weekly events at the renowned Vicar Street Venue or Thomas Street venues like Arthur’s Pub and The Thomas House, or get to the heart of craft brewing and distilling along the area’s Distilleries Trail.

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Studying in The Liberties


Student life is a big feature of The Liberties, with The National College of Art & Design (NCAD) injecting youthful energy into Thomas Street.  Other educational institutions in the area include BIMM (British and Irish Modern Music Institute), Liberties College and more.  Full-time students attending the colleges in the area keep The Liberties bustling during term time.  In addition to formal education establishments, there are numerous lifelong learning opportunities available in the colleges and within tech and media hubs.

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Festival Time!

Liberties Festival 2017

Community is all important in The Liberties and the biggest celebration of community happens each July with the annual Liberties Festival. Now well over 40 and proud of it, its Dublin’s longest-established community arts festival. For a week each summer the streets of Dublin 8 buzz with great family events, night-time favourites and a sense of fun! The Festival is run by SICCDA with proud support from Dublin City Council, Diageo and others.

Meanwhile culture vultures can enjoy a unique weekend of events in the area’s national cultural institutions during A Culture Date With Dublin 8, which runs each May. The new festival opens the door of sights and attractions in The Liberties, Kilmainham, Inchicore and the Phoenix Park.

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Venue Listings

The Liberties has events of all types happening every week.  Vicar Street is a stop off point for bands and acts touring the world and you will always catch a great show at The Tivoli Theatre on Francis Street.  In the tech and media buildings, entrepreneurs, investors and inventors mingle to discuss the latest great things to come out of Dublin.  Venues like The Guinness Storehouse facilitate private events and conferences on an ongoing basis and The NCAD Gallery runs regular exhibitions.  Businesses that run events, both public and private are listed here.