On the 29th of June 2020, we reopened Blarney Castle & the Blarney Stone allowing it to be kissed by any of our visitors if they choose to do so.
This was the first time in its history that it was not possible to kiss the stone, and the response to this was staggering with messages of support from all over the world.
We went to great lengths over the last number of months to put a series of health & safety measures in place. These include:
- Working with Enva. An environmental company who deal with Covid solutions for a return to work. We will now be using a cleanser that is W.H.O approved and will kill 99.9% of germs, bacteria etc that may be on the stone. This has been tested on the stone to show its effectiveness in killing bacteria/viruses but also that it is safe for people to come in contact with.
- This new spray will be used on the stone and allowed to dry for a period of 1 minute. A systematic review published in the Journal of Hospital Infection demonstrated that a (H2O2) concentration of 0.5% achieved a Log4 (99.99%) inactivation of human coronavirus HCoV-229E within 1 minute.
- To maintain social distancing within the castle, the number of people in the building will be limited.
- There will be numerous hand sanitiser stations throughout the castle, before entering the stairs and also leaving, meaning people can clean their hands if they have used the handrails.
- A staff member at regular intervals throughout the day will spray the stairwells, handrails and rope with anti-bacterial cleanser.
- The person holding people kissing the stone, will be wearing a protective face shield and gloves. The gloves will be changed/cleaned after each person.
- The Blarney Stone, the mat people lie on, and the bars they hold will be cleaned after every person.
- There is a hand sanitiser unit located just after kissing the stone so people can clean their hands after holding the bars.
- The staff members holding people kissing the stone will be temperature checked daily before starting work.
Owner Charles Colthurst ‘we believe this is a significant introduction of measures to help make this 600-year-old tradition as safe as possible’.
‘There are some very difficult times ahead in the tourism industry but hopefully this is the start of our journey over the coming years to try and grow our visitor numbers back to similar levels before the covid situation’.
‘We hope to see you all very soon, whether it is to step back in time and learn the famous history of Blarney Castle or explore the world class gardens that we have on offer’.
If you have any questions about your visit, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us. We look forward to seeing you soon.