County Clare native mystified as to motive behind “petrol-doused rags” arson attack on his Irish pub, The Irish Rover

A County Clare bar owner in Louisville Kentucky has been left rattled after a suspected arson attack on his Irish pub, The Irish Rover.

Michael Reidy, who has owned the Irish pub for 25 years, was woken in the early hours of Thursday morning, with reports from the fire services that his bar was on fire. Speaking to local news WHAS11, Reidy explained that a passerby had noticed smoke coming from the restaurant’s door and called 911. It is officially being investigated as arson.

Reidy said “The forensic expert was here and said it was some petrol-doused rags or some accelerant that was stuffed into the mail slot and set on fire.”

While, luckily, no one was injured and there was little damage to the pub Reidy is far more concerned about the motive behind the act.

He said “To me, it's honestly a face of hate in the way that you'd want to destroy somebody's career and business. It's not a prank like thing that somebody would do. You just don’t happen to walk around with a can of accelerant or rags going for coffee in the morning. There was intent to do harm.”

He told WLKY: “In 25 years I’m sure we’ve rattled a few people and upset some but I’d hope not to the extent that they would do something like this.

“I would hate to have all this work and all this effort and all this time go up in smoke… literately.”

However, the County Clare man, who had his restaurant back open for business for Thursday’s lunchtime rush, is choosing to look on the bright side.

From the bottom of our hearts, a huge THANK YOU to the many, many people who have shown support following the fire. ...

Posted by The Irish Rover on Friday, 5 January 2018

"Thank God that nobody was hurt. Thank God somebody was so kind as to alert the fire brigade to bring them here. Thank God there are so many great people out there who have responded so very kindly to us in such a wonderful way. I will never underestimate the value and the love they have shown us,” Reidy said.

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