Newcastle Alliance Councillor Patrick Clarke has hailed the St. Patrick’s seven day programme festival of events which ran from 12th – 19th March in Downpatrick a resounding success and a tremendous tourism boost for Down District. The hi-light of the week long programme of festivities was the St. Patrick’s Day cross-community carnival parade through Downpatrick which attracted over 70 floats and 30,000 spectators.
Councillor Patrick Clarke stated: “As one of Ireland’s most ancient and historic towns Downpatrick is widely known as St. Patrick’s town and the burial place of the patron saint. The St. Patrick’s day cross-community celebrations certainly live up to expectations and attracted crowds of over 30,000 to the streets of Downpatrick.
“The cross-community carnival parade had over 70 entrants from community, voluntary charitable and sporting organisations, vintage clubs, schools, church and youth groups, dancers, musicians and bands, plus many other spectacular floats, entertainers and attractions.
“Following an Interdenominational service held in Down Cathedral the carnival parade was also led by the various ecumenical church leaders in Downpatrick highlighting the cross-community side to the St. Patrick’s Day festival.
“There can be no doubt that this year’s St. Patrick’s Day carnival parade in Downpatrick was one of the biggest in the North and is continuing to grow year by year.
“I would to congratulate all those involved in organising one of the most successful St. Patrick’s Day cross-community carnival parades in Downpatrick this year, as well as the PSNI for patrolling the area on the day, and all agencies and volunteers who gave their time to make the event such a success.”