Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina dismissed talks of a rift with manager Brendan Rodgers after the Spaniard’s future with the club was in doubt. With rumours linking Reina with a return to Barcelona after Victor Valdes announced that he would be leaving the Camp Nou at the end of the season, Rodgers is doubtful about Reina’s long-term future with Liverpool But the Reds No. 1 denied any rumours and said he does not have any problems with Rodgers. Reina missed Liverpool’s last two games and was benched during Spain’s 1-1 draw against Finland on Friday. “My relationship with the manager is very good,”Reina said. “I think we have got a lot of ideas in common. There is understanding about tactics, and the way we see football is quite similar. I’m very happy with our manager.”
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It’s a blessing to be an FC Barcelona fan.
The best team in the world has the best fans in the world. And as a fan of El Blaugrana, there are some responsibilities you accomplishment.
What are these Barça accomplishments?
It’s what I call, the “Barça Bucket List.”
In this slideshow, I will present you with some things you, as a passionate FC Barcelona fan, must try to accomplish in your life, before you go to that big football pitch in the sky.
Some of the things I’ll mention are fairly simple, while others may take a bit longer to accomplish. Some of these items, even I, The Voice of FC Barcelona, have not yet accomplished.
Not yet, but eventually.
Remember, this article is all in good fun. So please relax if I didn’t mention something you thought merited to be on the list. Besides, it’s not like there is a game to preview for this weekend.
Thanks a lot, FIFA international break.
Here are eight things all FC Barcelona fans must have on their Barça Bucket List.
As part of its project on the cities of the future, the BBC asked a series of experts to explain their vision of where they would like to live in the future.
With input from those who are planning new cities to people who are retro-fitting old ones and even a child’s view of the future, we asked one simple question: “What if you could design a city from scratch?”
We have had some intriguing answers, from those who think the smart cities of the future will rely on technology to those who want to put people centre stage.
And for the children, who will after all be the citizens of these future urban spaces, the vision is more fantastical.
But then, who wouldn’t want a city with tree-high swimming pools full of sweets?
Guru Banavar is IBM’s chief technology officer and was the chief architect behind Rio de Janeiro’s control centre.
If I were to build a city from scratch, I would build in the digital infrastructure of sensors, networks and data analytics as meticulously as the physical infrastructure of buildings, roads, and utilities.
In a modern city, a robust digital infrastructure is essential to manage the physical resources and ensure that the city will be liveable and sustainable over the long term.
A well-designed digital infrastructure will support decision-making by public managers as well as private citizens.
By understanding the large volumes of data emitted by a city, it is possible to not only sense and respond to the current demands of citizens, but also be proactive in anticipating the needs and issues that citizens may face in the future.
A modern city would go far beyond simply sensing what’s going on all around. Good decisions are based on a good understanding of information, which means that city data from many sources will need to be integrated and analysed rapidly. For example, city leaders will need high-quality insights to manage a carbon neutrality programme, a social and health services programme, or an innovative public transportation programme.
The digital infrastructure can provide the insight and foresight needed to support the right operational decisions, drive long-term plans, and help evolve the city towards its goals, whether they are social, economic, or environmental.
Steve Lewis knows better than many the problems of building a city from scratch because he is attempting to do just that in Portugal.
Reasons for urbanisation are wide-ranging but tend to be economic and social in nature.
Today the top 25 cities in the world account for 50% or more of our global wealth.
Traditionally, permanent and sustainable settlement has taken hundreds of years – in some cases, thousands. However, due to rapid population growth and development of certain regions of the world, town and cities are established rapidly – some in the space of a few years.
Through significant advances in computer simulation to provide tools that enable an entire community – including planners – to consider, evaluate and implement current requirements while modelling future scenarios.
Moreover, this simulation of thousands of complex variables may include, for example, balancing aesthetics with efficient use of capital – new methods to plan, design, manufacture, operate – and natural resources.
It may include reducing our impact on the environment while creating places that increase social cohesion, or accelerating human interaction in education, health and employment to improve the quality of life for an ever greater percentage of our world population.
However, people will remain the critical determining factor of how we interpret, implement and enhance our urban environments.
Ultimately, they will decide how we retain the fundamental organic development of our cities that lead to their future sustainability.
Towns and cities do not exist without their essential ingredient – their citizens.
Tom Steinberg has revolutionised engagement between citizens and government with services such as FixMyStreet – empowering people to report things such as potholes and graffiti. Having started in the UK, it is now a global phenomenon.
I’d like to see a city in which every occasion on which you received a public service was also an opportunity to get involved with the decision-making that determines the nature of that service.
Let me give you an example. I have an old mattress I need to get rid of, so I go to the council website to find out how to do this.
The council offers a disposal service, but it seems pretty expensive to me – £30.
In my vision of a modern city, the page that tells me the cost will link to information on who made the decision to impose a charge, what reason was given, and who controls this decision in the future.
The key word here is “opportunity”.
I don’t think that people want to be repeatedly told that they should be good citizens, attending planning meetings seven days a week.
But I do think that every moment of contact between me and the city government – every time I get on a publicly subsidised bus, or check the day of my bin collection – should be treated as an opportunity to engage me in the decisions that relate to that service, if I want.
The technology required for this radical educational idea is as old as technology gets on the web – it’s the humble link.
The challenge is persuading politicians that it is healthy for more local people to understand how decisions are made.
Carlo Ratti heads up Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Senseable Cities Lab, which aims to study the ways cities are transforming themselves using sensors and electronic systems.
If we could design a city from scratch… we would not do it!
Since their emergence around 10,000 years ago, cities have always been the outcome of a collaborative, bottom-up process.
The “urbs”- as Romans would call the physical form of the city – was nothing other than the result of the “civitas”, the community of the citizen.
Even when Romans needed to plan a new city, they did little more than laying out the main axes and parcelling the land, leaving it up to the individuals to take action.
The idea that an architect could design a city from scratch, in a top-down way, is relatively new.
It embodies both the 19th Century dream of the artist with unbound freedom and imagination and the egotistic vision of the 20th Century architect; something that resembles Howard Rourke – Ayn Rand’s main character in The Fountainhead – who proclaimed that “the first right is the right of the ego”.
It also responds to the rapid expansion urbanisation of the past 100 years that often leads governments to call for quick solutions for human settlement.
Architectural exemplars of the limitations of such an approach stand out in the dullness of Brasilia and the rigidity of Chandigarh.
In fact, as Christopher Alexander reminded us, a good city cannot be designed in a top-down fashion.
Spaces and fluxes overlap and intertwine in our interaction with the city, which can only be shaped through a distributed, bottom-up process.
A chaotic self-organising movement, which resembles what we have seen during the Arab Spring and its fostering of new forms of participation, is rising in unexpected ways and with unknown consequence.
Can these very forms, supported by social media and new technologies, now extend to urban design and planning? Could this be the beginning of a new urban spring?
OK, so they aren’t experts but my children are the future citizens of such cities and have some interesting ideas about where they want to live.
Archie: If I could design a city the cars would run on water instead of fuel and would be driven automatically so that you could just sit back and enjoy the ride.
There would also be lots of huge buildings that lots and lots of people could work in.
In the city centre there would be an extraordinarily big shopping centre with everything you could possibly need.
As well as that, there would be little shops dotted around for certain things.
Everybody would exercise to keep themselves healthy.
Lily: If I could design a city from scratch I would have a swimming pool on trees filled with sweets and chocolate.
Also, I would have flying cars.
I would have schools that you play in all day and you would have offices that grown-ups can take their children into to watch TV all day.
At the centre of the town there would be shops and there would be a Santa’s workshop for whenever you wanted to make something.
It would be Christmas every day.
China’s environment ministry appears to have acknowledged the existence of so-called “cancer villages” after years of public speculation about the impact of pollution in certain areas.
For years campaigners have said cancer rates in some villages near factories and polluted waterways has shot up.
But the term “cancer village” has no technical definition and the ministry’s report did not elaborate on it.
There have been many calls for China to be more transparent on pollution.
The latest report from the environment ministry is entitled “Guard against and control risks presented by chemicals to the environment during the 12th Five-Year period (2011-2015)”.
It says that the widespread production and consumption of harmful chemicals forbidden in many developed nations are still found in China.
“The toxic chemicals have caused many environmental emergencies linked to water and air pollution,” it said.
The report goes on to acknowledge that such chemicals could pose a long-term risk to human health, making a direct link to the so-called “cancer villages”.
“There are even some serious cases of health and social problems like the emergence of cancer villages in individual regions,” it said.
The BBC’s Martin Patience in Beijing says that as China has experienced rapid development, stories about so-called cancer villages have become more frequent.
And China has witnessed growing public anger over air pollution and industrial waste caused by industrial development.
Media coverage of conditions in these so-called “cancer villages” has been widespread. In 2009, one Chinese journalist published a map identifying dozens of apparently affected villages.
In 2007 the BBC visited the small hamlet of Shangba in southern China where one scientist was studying the cause and effects of pollution on the village.
He found high levels of poisonous heavy metals in the water and believed there was a direct connection between incidences of cancer and mining in the area.
Until now, there has been little comment from the government on such allegations.
Environmental lawyer Wang Canfa, who runs a pollution aid centre in Beijing, told the AFP news agency that it was the first time the “cancer village” phrase had appeared in a ministry document.
Last month – Beijing – and several other cities – were blanketed in smog that soared past levels considered hazardous by the World Health Organisation.
The choking pollution provoked a public outcry and led to a highly charged debate about the costs of the country’s rapid economic development, our correspondent says.
Seventy years ago today, three German students were executed in Munich for leading a resistance movement against Hitler. Since then, the members of the White Rose group have become German national heroes – Lilo Furst-Ramdohr was one of them.
In 1943, World War II was at its height – but in Munich, the centre of Nazi power, a group of students had started a campaign of passive resistance.
Liselotte Furst-Ramdohr, already a widow at the age of 29 following her husband’s death on the Russian front, was introduced to the White Rose group by her friend, Alexander Schmorell.
“I can still see Alex today as he told me about it,” says Furst-Ramdohr, now a spry 99-year-old. “He never said the word ‘resistance’, he just said that the war was dreadful, with the battles and so many people dying, and that Hitler was a megalomaniac, and so they had to do something.”
What was the White Rose?
- Resistance group formed in 1942 by group of Munich University students and their professor
- Horrified by Nazism, they wrote and distributed leaflets urging Germans to oppose Hitler’s regime
- Also painted anti-Nazi slogans on buildings around Munich
- Produced six leaflets before their arrest
Schmorell and his friends Christoph Probst and Hans Scholl had started writing leaflets encouraging Germans to join them in resisting the Nazi regime.
With the help of a small group of collaborators, they distributed the leaflets to addresses selected at random from the phone book.
Furst-Ramdohr says the group couldn’t understand how the German people had been so easily led into supporting the Nazi Party and its ideology.
“They must have been able to tell how bad things were, it was ridiculous,” she says.
The White Rose delivered the leaflets by hand to addresses in the Munich area, and sent them to other cities through trusted couriers.
Furst-Ramdohr never delivered the leaflets herself but hid them in a broom cupboard in her flat.
She also helped Schmorell make stencils in her flat saying “Down with Hitler”, and on the nights of 8 and 15 February, the White Rose graffitied the slogan on walls across Munich.
Furst-Ramdohr remembers the activists – who were risking their lives for their beliefs – as young and naive.
One of the best-known members of the group today is Hans Scholl’s younger sister Sophie, later the subject of an Oscar-nominated film, Sophie Scholl: The Final Days. Furst-Ramdohr remembers that Sophie was so scared that she used to sleep in her brother’s bed.
‘Fight against the Party!’
The sixth leaflet produced by the White Rose was smuggled out of the country and scattered over Germany by Allied planes.
The day of reckoning has come, the reckoning of German youth with the most repellent tyranny our nation has ever seen…
For us there is only one slogan: Fight against the Party! Get out of the party hierarchy, which wants to keep us silent!
The German name will be dishonoured forever if German youth does not rise up, to revenge and atone at once, to destroy their tormentors and build up a new spiritual Europe. Students! The German nation looks to us!
Translation: Lucy Burns
“Hans was very afraid too, but they wanted to keep going for Germany – they loved their country,” she says.
On 18 February, Hans and Sophie Scholl set off on their most daring expedition yet. They planned to distribute copies of their sixth – and as it would turn out, final – leaflet at the University of Munich, where students would find them as they came out of lectures.
The siblings left piles of the leaflets around the central stairwell. But as they reached the top of the stairs, Sophie still had a number of leaflets left over – so she threw them over the balcony, to float down to the students below.
She was seen by a caretaker, who called the Gestapo. Hans Scholl had a draft for another leaflet in his pocket, which he attempted to swallow, but the Gestapo were too quick.
The Scholl siblings were arrested and tried in front of an emergency session of the People’s Court. They were found guilty and executed by guillotine, along with their friend and collaborator Christoph Probst, on 22 February 1943.
Hans Scholl’s last words before he was executed were: “Long live freedom!”
The Scholls were tried at the People’s Court of Law, now Munich’s district court
The rest of the White Rose group was thrown into panic. Alexander Schmorell went straight to Lilo Forst-Ramdohr’s flat, where she helped him find new clothes and a fake passport. Schmorell attempted to flee to Switzerland but was forced to turn back by heavy snow.
Returning to Munich, he was captured after a former girlfriend recognised him entering an air raid shelter during a bombing raid. He was arrested, and later executed.
Lilo Furst-Ramdohr was herself arrested on 2 March. “Two Gestapo men came to the flat and they turned everything upside down,” she says.
“They went through my letters, and then one of them said ‘I’m afraid you’ll have to come with us’.
“They took me to the Gestapo prison in the Wittelsbach Palais on the tram – they stood behind my seat so I couldn’t escape.”
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Find out more
Lucy Burns interviewed Liselotte Furst-Ramdohr for the BBC World Service programme Witness
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Furst-Ramdohr spent a month in Gestapo custody. She was regularly interrogated about her role in the White Rose, but eventually released without charge – a stroke of luck she puts down to her status as a war widow, and to the likelihood that the Gestapo was hoping she would lead them to other co-conspirators. After her release she was followed by the secret police for some time.
She then fled Munich for Aschersleben, near Leipzig, where she married again and opened a puppet theatre.
The final White Rose leaflet was smuggled out of Germany and intercepted by Allied forces, with the result that, in the autumn of 1943, millions of copies were dropped over Germany by Allied aircraft.
Since the end of the war, the members of the White Rose have become celebrated figures, as German society has searched for positive role models from the Nazi period.
But Furst-Ramdohr doesn’t like it. “At the time, they’d have had us all executed,” she says of the majority of her compatriots.
She now lives alone in a small town outside Munich, where she continued to give dancing lessons up to the age of 86.
Her friend Alexander Schmorell was made a saint by the Russian Orthodox church in 2012.
“He would have laughed out loud if he’d known,” says Furst-Ramdohr. “He wasn’t a saint – he was just a normal person.”
Would you put your baby or toddler outside in the freezing cold for their lunchtime nap? Most Nordic parents wouldn’t give it a second thought. For them it’s part of their daily routine.
Daytime temperatures this winter in Stockholm have regularly dropped to -5C (23F) but it’s still common to see children left outside by their parents for a sleep in the pram.
Wander through the snowy city and you’ll see buggies lined up outside coffee shops while parents sip on lattes inside.
And if you are visiting friends and your child needs a nap, you may be offered the garden or balcony instead of a bedroom.
“I think it’s good for them to be in the fresh air as soon as possible,” says Lisa Mardon, a mother-of-three from Stockholm, who works for a food distribution company.
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When the temperature drops to -15C we always cover the prams with blankets”
Pre-school head teacher
“Especially in the winter when there’s lots of diseases going around… the kids seem healthier.”
Her children have been sleeping outside since they were born.
The youngest, Alfred, is two and she puts him outside in the pram to nap once a day, for an hour and a half. When he was younger he slept outside twice a day.
This isn’t a recent fashion. Lisa’s mother, Gunilla, now 61, says she also did it with Lisa when she was a baby.
“Yes we were doing it back then as well… It was important for her to get fresh air and stay healthy,” Gunilla says.
And Lisa’s father, Peter, was put outside by his mother to sleep in a pram in the 1950s. Only when it got to around -10C (14F) did she bring him indoors.
Nowadays most day-care centres in Sweden put children outside to rest. It’s common to see rows of prams lined up in the snow at nap-time, with youngsters fast asleep inside.
he baby is electronically monitored, as is the outside temperature… -10C
At Forskolan Orren, a pre-school outside Stockholm, all children sleep outside until they reach the age of three.
“When the temperature drops to -15C (5F) we always cover the prams with blankets,” says head teacher Brittmarie Carlzon.
“It’s not only the temperature that matters, it’s also how cold it feels. Some days it can be -15C but it actually feels like -20C (-4F) because of the wind,” she says.
Babies often sleep outside cafes in Copenhagen too
“Last year we had a couple of days with a temperature of -20C. On those days we brought the prams inside some of the time the children were sleeping, but most of their sleep they spent outdoors.”
One group at the pre-school spends all its time outside, from 09:00 to 15:00 every day. Out in the fresh air they do everything children normally do inside, only going inside at mealtimes, or in unusually cold weather.
The theory behind outdoor napping is that children exposed to fresh air, whether in summer or the depths of winter, are less likely to catch coughs and colds – and that spending a whole day in one room with 30 other children does them no good at all.
Many parents also believe their children sleep better and for longer in the open, and one researcher in Finland – outdoor napping is popular in all the Nordic countries – says she has evidence from a survey of parents to back this up.
“Babies clearly slept longer outdoors than indoors,” says Marjo Tourula. While indoor naps lasted between one and two hours, outdoor naps lasted from 1.5 to three hours.
“Probably the restriction of movements by clothing could increase the length of sleep, and a cold environment makes swaddling possible without overheating,” she says.
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Finland’s ‘official’ nap advice
Irrespective of the season, many children have their evening naps outside in prams.
Many babies sleep better outdoors in the fresh air than in the bedroom. Sleeping outdoors is not dangerous for a baby. One may gradually start going outdoors when the baby is two weeks old.
Read more: Having children in Finland
According to her research, -5C is the best temperature for an outdoor nap – though some parents she spoke to even put their children out at -30C.
But do children who sleep outside end up catching fewer coughs and colds?
Paediatrician Margareta Blennow says reports from the Swedish Environmental protection agency show conflicting results.
“In some studies they found pre-schoolers who spent many hours outside generally – not just for naps – took fewer days off than those who spent most of their time indoors,” she says.
“In other studies there wasn’t a difference.”
Martin Jarnstrom, head of one of the Ur och Skur group of pre-schools , is another big advocate of outdoor naps, though he emphasises that while the weather may be cold, the child must be warm.
“It’s very important that the children have wool closest to their body, warm clothes and a warm sleeping bag,” he says.
There is a Swedish saying that encapsulates this thought – “There is no bad weather, only bad clothing.”
Another saying sums up what Swedes are likely to think when toddlers in other countries are kept indoors in sub-zero temperatures: “A little fresh air never hurt anyone.”
To many in the outside world, Silvio Berlusconi is the clown prince of politics – better known for his bunga-bunga parties, outrageous comments and courtroom battles than for any obvious political nous.
Within Italy, though, the former prime minister remains a potent political force. His centre-right People of Freedom (PDL) party has been gaining ground, and he may well be in the reckoning when this weekend’s election results roll in.
So, what is the secret of his enduring attraction? Some of his faithful followers in Italy’s affluent north explain why they have stayed loyal, despite all the scandal. Another, meanwhile, explains why he has finally had enough.
Andrea Bianchi, 66
Mr Bianchi describes himself as one of life’s “gypsies”. He’s travelled the world during a career that’s included the Italian diplomatic service, shipping and finance industries. He now works as a training consultant to big firms from his home in Milan. Mr Bianchi has been a Berlusconi fan since the former cruise-ship crooner exploded onto the political scene in 1994 – and he remains one to this day. He even supports Mr Berlusconi’s AC Milan.
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The way he’s been attacked over the years has infuriated me”
“This was a man who’d come from virtually nothing to be a big success in building, finance, the media – and had spotted a gap in the political market. He also opened up politics – to businessmen, academics and managers. And I like his easy way with people. What he’s found, though, is that the Italian political system is very difficult to change, because of the resistance of the political system and vested interests.
“The way he’s been attacked over the years has infuriated me. They started out trying to attack him on issues that seemed important – and when that didn’t work, they ended up talking about the girls and the parties.
“What he has now – in addition to his business expertise – is 20 years’ experience of politics. And that could be invaluable at this difficult time. In fact, I believe in him now even more than in the past.”
Luca Ferri, 27
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The other parties – on the left – they want to talk about gay weddings. I mean – what planet are they on? They’ve no experience of the real world”
Mr Ferri is single, and a marketing graduate. Home is a small village called Comun Nuova, in the Po valley. His day starts at 06:00 in the morning, when he sets off for work at the nearby Tenaris steel plant. Four evenings a week he studies for his masters degree in international marketing.
“Berlusconi’s no saint, we all know that. But there’s a saying in Italian – ‘ci mette la faccia’ – which basically means someone’s not afraid of a fight, of taking a risk. And that’s Berlusconi all over. He has no fear.
“Before he came back as leader – just before the election – the PDL was down and out. Now it’s back and fighting hard. The PDL might still lose – but it would have been a lot worse without Berlusconi.
“Berlusconi is the only one who knows how to talk to people about their real problems. You know, we’ve businessmen round here who’ve lost everything they’ve worked to build up over the past 40 years – men who can’t even afford a decent meal any more.
“And the other parties – on the left – they want to talk about gay weddings. I mean – what planet are they on? They’ve no experience of the real world. The only world most of them know is the world of politics.”
Maria Birolini, 43
Ms Birolini is running for election to the Lombardy regional council on the PDL ticket. A 43-year-old mother of two, she’s passionate about culture, the importance of rooting out corruption and the role of women in Italian society. How does that sit with her place in a party led by a man known for constant corruption allegations – and a taste for dancing girls?
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I think he got misled by some of those around him”
“Berlusconi is not the PDL. The reason I’m in the PDL is because it represents freedom of choice – and it’s only by the exercise of choice that you become a better citizen. Berlusconi did a lot for the country in his first 10 years. But after that, I think he got misled by some of those around him.
“It’s really difficult to be a woman in the centre-right at the moment because some of the examples in the past were so bad. We’re all ‘messo nello stesso cappello’ – thrown together in the same hat. It’s my personal battle to show that a woman can make a valid contribution politically, that there’s a different way to be a woman in politics on the centre-right. It’s a heavy responsibility – especially at a time like this.
“But the top priority after the election has to be to tackle corruption. The worst thing is the way it’s insinuated its way into society – so that ordinary people end up thinking it’s not really criminal behaviour, just a way of doing business.”
Giovanni Marieni Saredo, 70
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He lost his sense of proportion – and of the ridiculous. And as a result, he’s simply not credible anymore.”
Mr Marieni is a property owner and retired manager, whose family home is in the town of Bergamo, just outside Milan. He’s a firm believer in free-market liberalism – and had great hopes for Silvio Berlusconi when he first appeared on the political scene. But this time, he says, he won’t be voting PDL.
“I voted for him because he seemed to be the only person who could prevent Italy being taken over by the communists or ex-communists. I think he had a genuine desire to renew the country – to slash bureaucracy and shake up the public administration, education and health.
He also saw the need to modernise our infrastructure in order to catch up with the rest of Europe – everything from high-speed train networks and motorways to nuclear power plants and high-speed internet access.
“But the establishment – most of it on the left – was against all this – and so started the battle against him – like antibodies fighting off alien intruders in the body.
“Now, though, I think his time is over. He eventually came to see himself as almighty. He lost his sense of proportion – and of the ridiculous: all those alleged red-light parties, Ruby and the rest. And as a result, he’s simply not credible anymore.”
Irish police officer found 51 people dressed as nuns in the bar after closing time
An Irish publican has been prosecuted after police found dozens of “nuns” drinking illegally, several hours past closing time on his premises.
Christy Walsh, who runs the bar in Listowel, County Kerry, has been fined a total of 700 euros (£605) after his pub was raided twice in one night.
He had helped to organise a charity event in the town last July, in which hundreds of people dressed up as nuns.
Mr Walsh said he was “disappointed” but vowed to continue his charity work.
The Nunday event took place in Listowel on 30 June 2012, and set a new record for the “largest gathering of people dressed as nuns”.
In total, 1,436 adults made a holy show of themselves at a GAA sports ground in the town.
The volunteers donned nuns’ outfits and gathered in the field, where they were counted by officials acting on behalf of Guinness World Records.
The adjudicators also made sure that the ‘sisters’ observed a strict dress code. It had to include a habit, a veil, black shoes and black socks or tights.
Mr Walsh, who was a member of the Nunday organising committee, said the small town’s population doubled for the day as up to 3,000 extra people came to Listowel to either participate in or witness the unusual event.
It was staged in aid of Pieta House, a suicide and self-harm awareness charity.
The ‘nuns’ gathered in a sports field in Listowel where they were officially counted, setting a new Guinness World Record
However, after pub closing time, in the early hours of the following morning, police entered Mr Christy’s bar on two separate occasions, and found 51 ‘nuns’ on the premises.
The officers first came in to the pub at about 01:45 BST, 45 minutes after closing time and found 30 people dressed as nuns.
Their second visit was at about 04:10 BST, when they observed 21 ‘sisters’ still at the bar.
Mr Walsh said he was at the premises for the first police visit and accepted that the police were “doing their job”.
He said he was not there in person for the second visit, because he was driving people home.
He claimed that many people found to be in the pub after hours were waiting on taxis.
Publican Christy Walsh said the event raised thousands for charity
Mr Walsh said Listowel had a population of about 3,000 people and on a typical Saturday night there were only about 10 taxis to cater for late night revellers.
The publican said he was disappointed by the decision to proceed with the prosecution.
However, he appeared philosophical about it, adding that the event had raised around 26,000 euros (£22,500) for charity.
The idea had come from a County Kerry couple, who had lost their 17-year-old son to suicide.
Mr Walsh said when the nun costumes were suggested, the organising committee sought reaction from a local convent and from a parish priest before going ahead with it.
He claimed that both saw the humour, agreed it was for a good cause, and “gave their blessing” to Nunday.