Liam Neeson forces climb down on Central Park carriages

Hollywood superstar Liam Neeson appears to have ‘taken’ another scalp . This time it’s that of New York Mayor Bill de Blasio over their long-running feud over whether horses and carriages  -a major tourist attraction - should continue to operate around Central Park.

Drivers and owners of horse-drawn carriages around Central Park have backed actor Liam Neeson in his head-to-head with Mayor de Blasio of New York

Drivers and owners of horse-drawn carriages around Central Park have backed actor Liam Neeson in his head-to-head with Mayor de Blasio of New York Image by Kowarski / CC BY 2.0

The Mayor had promised that he would rid Manhattan of the animals if he was elected to the office, but found the Irish-born actor a formidable opponent on the issue.

Horse-drawn carriage, Central Park.

Horse-drawn carriage, Central Park is a major tourist attraction all the year round. Image by Joachim Fenkes / CC BY-SA 2.0

The Belfast Telegraph reports that de Blasio has backtracked on his pre-election pledge with the actor claiming victory over what he said was a “misguided” mayoral stance.

For the first time de Blasio acknowledged that his bill to outlaw the carriage industry was failing to make progress. Neeson said that was because several polls had shown strong opposition to the banning of the horses and carriages and he claimed the Mayor was finally listening to sense.

He wants de Blasio to state that the ban will be put in cold storage for good.

He pointed out that such a declaration was the only way that the owners and drivers would feel their livelihoods were safe.

The industry is an integral part of allowing tourists see the city and the industry is hailing Neeson as something of a real-life hero.

Now Neeson, who lives in the area and is friends with many carriage drivers, is being regarded as someone who could follow the likes of Ronald Reagan and move from acting into mainstream politics

He has not been afraid to voice his concerns on contentious issues, mostly notably when he criticized the proliferation of guns in the US. Ironically, this stance brought him into direct conflict with PARA USA, the gun company which provided the arms for his action move Taken 3.

The Ballymena-born actor has said he is giving up acting within the next two years, thereby fuelling rumours that he may transfer to the political stage.

Related content