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Dublin: 7°C Sunday 18 April 2021

Keep an eye out ... These two men are officially allowed graze their sheep on Stephen's Green from today

John Giles and Brother Kevin Crowley join the likes of Brian O’Driscoll, The Edge and Aung San Suu Kyi in the city’s most exclusive club.

Updated at 9.10am.

LORD MAYOR CHRISTY Burke conferred the Freedom of Dublin on soccer legend John Giles and homelessness campaigner Brother Kevin Crowley last night.

The ceremony took place at the Round Room at the Mansion House.

The Lord Mayor and Council staff tweeting updates on preparations for the event all day…

Later in the evening, the red carpet was laid out ahead of the two men’s arrival…

A statement from the Council said the Capuchin Day Centre CEO and Ireland player-turned-pundit and were being honoured (respectively) “in recognition of their work in the fields of social justice and sport”.

“I have known Brother Kevin for many years and have always been inspired by the invaluable work that he carries out each and every day at the Capuchin Centre in the city,” Burke said in the statement.

“John has been a true leader in his sporting life and has achieved greatness through his skill both as a player and as a manager. By giving this award the city is acknowledging their unique contribution.”

Here’s what the two latest recipients of the city’s highest honour had to say:

Launch of Capuchin Day Centre Charities Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

Brother Kevin:

I love the work I am doing. My real goal in life is to help those that are in need and I would hope to keep going at that for as long as I can. I feel very honoured and proud to accept the Freedom of the City and it’s a privilege to accept it on behalf of homeless people and people in need.

Soccerex Buses Source: Photocall Ireland

John Giles:

 I played football because I loved it and enjoyed it. I didn’t set out to get awards like the Freedom of the City. Anything like this comes as a surprise. As far as I am concerned I was doing my job and I enjoyed it. It is an extra bonus and a great honour. It’s great for my family and friends and it’s great for the football community.

The two become the 79th and 80th people to receive the honour.

Previous recipients include Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi, and the members of U2.

Brian O’ Driscoll and Fr. Peter McVerry received the award last year.

freedom Giles and Crowley at this evening's ceremony. Source: Colm Mahady/Fennells

Ancient privileges of the honour include the right to pasture sheep on common ground within the city, like Stephen’s Green (Bono did it for real, in 2000).

First posted 6pm Saturday.

Read: President Higgins follows in Bill Clinton and Terry Wogan’s footsteps and gets freedom of his birthplace

Read: Giant banner welcomes Aung San Suu Kyi to Ireland

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