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400,000 people attend St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Dublin after two-year absence

The parade began at 12pm on Parnell Square and finished on Kevin Street at around 2pm.

LAST UPDATE | Mar 17th 2022, 6:00 PM

ST PATRICK’S DAY celebrations returned across the country today, as towns and cities throughout Ireland attended parades following a two-year absence.

An estimated 400,000 people attended the parade in Dublin, which began at 12pm on Parnell Square and finished on Kevin Street at around 2pm.

The crowds, packed with people from home and abroad, were wowed by a selection of colourful floats and musical performances. 

The parade began with a show of solidarity for the people of Ukraine, with Lord Mayor of Dublin Alison Gilliland and Ukrainian Ambassador to Ireland Larysa Gerasko exchanging national symbols – a bowl of shamrocks and a bouquet of sunflowers.

Patricks Day 052 Counsellor Olena Shaloput holds a bowl of shamrocks while Ambassador of Ukraine to Ireland Gerasko Larysa embraces Lord Mayor of Dublin Alison Gilliland. Leah Farrell Leah Farrell

st patricks 573 The opening of the St Patrick's Day parade in Dublin this afternoon. Sam Boal Sam Boal

A group of Irish and Ukrainian people carried the country’s flags to open the parade. Carlow medical student Racheal Diyaolu, who fled Ukraine following the invasion, was among the group.

Olympic and Paralympic gold medal winners Kellie Harrington and Ellen Keane were Grand Marshals for this year’s parade, the theme of which was ‘Connections’.

The international guest of honour was Irish-American actor John C Reilly.

Harrington said it was “fantastic” to be chosen as a grand marshal. 

st patricks day 657 Grand Marshals Ellen Keane and Kellie Harrington being driven up Dame Street during the St. Patrick's Day parade. Sam Boal Sam Boal

ZZZA Crowds gather on O'Connell street in Dublin PA PA

“For myself and Ellen to be grand marshals, two female athletes, it’s amazing and it shows the strength in female sport, it’s always been there,” she said.

“To be chosen to walk through our city as grand marshals is fantastic. It’s great to show younger kids coming up that if they work hard they can achieve anything.”

President Michael D Higgins and his wife Sabina also attended the parade. President Higgins spoke about the conflict in Ukraine and commended the bravery of the Ukrainian people.

“Everybody admires the values that are being released in people at survival, and that’s why they deserve the support of the whole world in their survival, and also the strength they’re showing against such an appalling, immoral and illegal activity,” he said. 

Here are some photos of today’s festivities in Dublin:

Patricks Day 008 Cassie Bradley age 10 from Armagh on O'Connell Street Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie / RollingNews.ie

unnamed (4) Sam Boal Sam Boal

unnamed (3) Performers marching on Dame Street during the St. Patrick's Day parade Sam Boal Sam Boal

Patricks Day 017 Performers on O'Connell Street. RollingNews.ie RollingNews.ie

image0 Heidi O'Connor attending her first St Patrick's Day parade on Dame Street Darran O'Connor Darran O'Connor

st patricks day 820 A marching band performing in the parade in Dublin. Sam Boal Sam Boal

Patricks Day 042 Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie / RollingNews.ie

Patricks Day 011 Olivia Greene age 4 from Dublin on O'Connell Street

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