Belfast Telegraph

St Patrick's Day 2018: Belfast celebrations announced

St Patrick's Day celebrations in Belfast have been announced with a major parade and free concert part of the line up.

The annual event will kick off this March 17 at 11.30am with a vibrant parade themed ‘Global Belfast’ leaving from Royal Avenue.

The sea of colour will travel along a new route through Castle Junction and along Donegall Place, before snaking its way around Belfast City Hall, and then returning along the same route to finish on Royal Avenue.

Meanwhile, former JLS member Aston Merrygold will be headlining a free concert at Custom House Square which will kick off from 1.30pm and will run until 4pm.

Joining the former Strictly Come Dancing contestant will be Irish dancing group Slide Step and Irish Festival Dancing School Tír Na n-Óg, who recently won the NI senior team title for a fifth year running.

Urban artists, Tanaka, winner of the PanArts Young Singer Songwriter Competition 2016 and JORD will inject a range of colourful influences ranging from R&B and AfroBeat to Pop and Folk to the concert.

There will also be festival favourites Pure Blarney’s unique brand of electro-acoustic folk rock and local trad band the Rare Aul Stuff are set to perform.

Q Radio and former X Factor star Eoghan Quigg will be hosting the event.

Also included in the celebrations will be Global Belfast and St Patrick’s Day themed arts and crafts, a range of walkabout, street theatre acts and face painters to keep even the youngest revellers entertained.

Hot food, soft drinks, sweet treats and more will be on sale from a range of traders.

Belfast Lord Mayor, Councillor Nuala McAllister, said: “I really can’t wait for this year’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Belfast, because I know that thousands of people of all ages, backgrounds and nationalities will be joining in the fun.

“The theme for my year in office is ‘Global Belfast’ and the wonderful Beat Carnival have worked so hard with their many community partners to create an incredible parade which illustrates that theme, as well as the diversity of the city we love, and our people."

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