Irish Post St Patrick's celebrations kick off in Glasgow

Irish Post St Patrick's celebrations kick off in Glasgow

GLASGOW’S historic city chambers were the setting for The Irish Post’s second annual St Patrick’s Breakfast held in Scotland this morning.

Scores made their way to the prestigious civic centre for the gathering hosted by Lord Provost Sadie Docherty.

While praising the great strides the Irish have made in Scotland to date, Glasgow’s first lady, who has roots in Co. Donegal, committed to keeping the Irish Post Breakfast a regular fixture for the city.

“This city owes a great deal to the Irish, who helped to build this city, as they did many cities in Britain” she claimed.

Regarding the chambers, the marble-clad headquarters of Glasgow City Council, she added: “This building was finished in 1888, and many people who built it, I expect, were Irish.”

Pat Bourne, Ireland’s Consul General to Scotland, continued the celebratory theme of the occasion, claiming: “It’s fitting that the Irish community that have contributed so much to Glasgow are here today.”

With the breakfast falling as St Patrick’s festivals and engagements got underway across Edinburgh, Glasgow and Coatbridge this week, and numerous Irish ministers are due to make their way to the country to join in the celebrations over the coming fortnight, Mr Bourne claimed his Edinburgh offices are rarely without a government visitor.

“There is a sense of real hope and optimism in the economy back in Ireland now and that’s translated into a great relationship between Ireland and Britain and Ireland and Scotland,” he explained.

“Not a week goes by when we don’t have a minister over to Scotland he added.”

In a nod to the recent campaign by the Irish community across Britain to stop RTE from closing their longwave 252 radio service, a decision now postponed until 2017, he claimed he would tackle Diaspora Minister Jimmy Deenihan on the topic on his next Scottish trip.

“I’ll be telling the Minister that we in Scotland want longwave 252 to stay – that it’s definitely something that we want here in the Irish community.”

As the event - which included Lord William Haughey and London Irish’s Bob Casey among those in attendance - came to a close, Mr Bourne gave a parting message, claiming: “It’s a great time to be Irish, to be Scottish and to be Irish in Scotland."