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Sea of colour as Foyle Cup teams meet at the Guildhall

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Crowds after the parade

Crowds after the parade

Organiser Michael Hutton, Mayor Hilary McClintock and Kim Hetherington from Hughes Insurance

Organiser Michael Hutton, Mayor Hilary McClintock and Kim Hetherington from Hughes Insurance

A dad and son soak up the sun

A dad and son soak up the sun

Kids enjoy the day

Kids enjoy the day

Crowds after the parade

The Guildhall Square in Londonderry was flooded with colour yesterday as the teams taking part in this year's Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup congregated following a parade through the city.

A record-breaking 310 sides are taking part in the contest. They will over the next five days play a staggering 1,036 games of football, before the eventual winners are declared on Sunday.

Teams from every corner of the UK, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland are taking part in the tournament.

The Foyle Cup is one of the most successful events in Derry's entertainment and sports calendar, and an estimated 73,000 people will come to the north-west to watch the games, which will be played in football grounds in Limavady, Strabane, Derry city and more.

By the time the tournament is over, the local economy will have been boosted by a whopping £1.75m, according to the Mayor of Derry and Strabane, councillor Hilary McClintock, who was on the steps of the Guildhall to welcome the teams to the city.

Michael Hutton, who organised the very first Foyle Cup, said the growth of the tournament had been beyond expectations.

"Every available bed space in Derry has been taken, including 500 at the Ulster University's Magee campus," he explained.

"There are also people staying in Limavady and Strabane, and also well into Donegal."

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Jon Clifford's Tristar Boy's football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Jon Clifford's Tristar Boy's football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Jon Clifford's Tristar Boy's football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Jon Clifford's Tristar Boy's football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Friendly rivalaries renewed as football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Friendly rivalaries renewed as football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup.  The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Jon Clifford's Tristar Boy's football teams arrive in Guildhall Square in Derry-Londonderry after a city centre parade at the start of the Hughes Insurance Foyle Cup. The annual tournament will see 2000 players from 310 teams playing over 1000 games across the North West. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 19.07.16

Belfast Telegraph