This year Manchester Town Hall and its clock will turn the colours of the Irish flag, green, white and orange in honour of Manchester’s 21st St. Patrick’s Festival.
The festival is run by volunteers led by committee president Councillor Pat Karney, Chair John Flanagan, Secretary Ann Bohan, Parade Marshall, Brian Kennedy and PRO Sinéad Flanagan.
• Thursday 10 March:Opening of the Manchester Irish Markets and O’Brien’s Bar from 12noon – 6pm until Sunday 13 march.
• Friday 11 March: Start of Manchester’s Irish Festival at Manchester Town Hall from 7pm. Guests will include Eamonn O’Neill, former Manchester Utd player Paddy Crerand and centenarian Maggie O’Malley, born in Mayo in 1916.
• Sunday 13 March:Manchester’s 26th annual St Patrick’s Parade (estd 1990) before which there will be a Mass as gaeilge at the Irish World Heritage Centre in Cheetham Hill at 9.30am at which The Redemptorist Centre of Music Concert Band from Limerick City will play, then join the parade which will leave at 12 noon to arrive at Manchester Town Hall for around 1pm.
The theme of the parade is Myths and Legends. After the parade there will be Ceili and Set Dancing in the Great Hall in Manchester Town Hall from 2pm.
• Wednesday 16 March: Around the Fire Tradfest of music, dance and storytelling. From 7pm at O’Briens Bar, Albert Square
The Manchester Irish Festivals 21st Birthday party was held at the Irish World Heritage Centre. Check this week’s paper for all the pics!