A SPECIAL presentation was made to long-term Irish Post photojournalist Brendan Farrell in Birmingham this morning.
Having joined the paper when it was founded in 1970, the Midlands-based Dublin native, who was raised in Co. Cavan, is one of the longest standing contributors to The Irish Post.
As more than 150 people turned out for the annual Irish Post St Patrick’s Breakfast at The Burlington hotel, Mr Farrell was among the special guests who joined us for the event - which also celebrated our 45th anniversary year.
“It’s great that The Irish Post has been around for 45 years, of which I have been directly involved for 41 years,” Mr Farrell said as he collected two specially designed Irish Post front pages commemorating the central part he has played in the history of the paper over those years.
“I hope it remains for many more years,” he added.
Those sentiments were echoed by MC extraordinaire Bob Brolly - a popular fixture of BBC West Midlands Radio, who led the occasion for another year.
The Co. Derry-native, who has been a key figure on the Irish scene in the Midlands for decades, announced his own plans for 2015 during the event – which will see him taking a part time role with the newly launched Irish TV network from a new base in the Birmingham Irish Centre.
The latest branch of the Irish TV venture will be officially launched in the city on March 27, he confirmed.
Congratulatory anniversary messages were also given by Birmingham Lord Mayor Shafique Shah, The Irish Embassy’s Clare Brosnan and Birmingham MP Jack Dromey, who were also in attendance this morning.
The Lord Mayor, whose grandmother was a Dubliner, told The Irish Post he was looking forward to the fortnight of events now due to take place across the city in honour of St Patrick’s Day.
The annual Birmingham St Patrick’s Festival kicked off last night (March 6) with a bustling launch party that was also held at the Burlington hotel.
Activities, gigs and events are scheduled throughout the coming week, with parade day kicking off in Digbeth on Sunday, March 15 with mass as St Ann’s church at 11am.