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What do Paul O'Connell, JFK and President Higgins have in common?

It’s an award (not the Heineken Cup).

St Patrick's Day Source: PA Archive/Press Association Images

LIMERICK CITY AND County Council have announced today that President Michael D Higgins is to be awarded the Freedom of Limerick in a ceremony next month.

The President, who was himself born in Limerick, will join previous recipients such as JFK, Eamon De Valera, Bill Clinton and Paul O’Connell.

Fianna Fáil Council Chairman Kevin Sheahan made the announcement earlier today:

President Higgins is renowned for cherishing and promoting our national culture in all its diversity and richness.
We want to celebrate and recognise the President’s unique contribution to Irish life, particularly as he is the sole patron of Limerick City of Culture.
President Higgins will be the first recipient to receive the Freedom of Limerick under our newly merged authority and we are very much looking forward to honouring him and showcasing our distinctive cultural heritage in Limerick at the conferring event next month.

The previously separate local authorities in Limerick were merged earlier this summer.

The Freedom of Limerick will be conferred on President Higgins on Monday 29 September at a public event at the Milk Market in the city.

Read: Photos from the 1970s tell the stories behind the people at Limerick’s Milk Market>

Limerick City of Culture gets new director>

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Dan MacGuill

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