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Dublin: 5 °C Sunday 26 January, 2020

Winter solstice to be marked at Newgrange

All going well this morning’s sunrise is expected to light up the passage tomb at Newgrange. However, tomorrow is actually the shortest day of the year.

Newgrange in Co Meath
Newgrange in Co Meath
Image: Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

THE WINTER SOLSTICE sunrise will be marked at Newgrange in Co Meath today where hundreds of people are expected to gather to mark the event – however it is tomorrow which is actually the shortest day of the year.

The passage tomb at Newgrange is where most people will gather as it is historically the place where the rising sun on the morning of the solstice lights up the chamber inside the historic structure.

The event will be primarily marked today but there are events between the 18 and 23 December at Newgrange.

“The 21st is what is generally felt as the shortest day of the year, but it’s actually tomorrow this year. It varies from year-to-year,” a spokesperson for the Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre in Meath told this morning.

While hundreds are expected at the site, only a few including local dignitaries will be allowed into the chamber to see the event. As long as the sunrise is visible the chamber will light up.

Across Europe, the event is also being marked with crowds gathering at ancient monuments including Stonehenge in the UK.

The Winter Solstice will be broadcast live on the Office of Public Works website from around 8.30am.

If you are at Newgrange or even if you’re just by watching the sunrise this morning send your pictures to and we’ll include them in a gallery later today.

Read: Hidden chambers may exist in Newgrange

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About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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