‘London is better because of its Irish community’, claims Mayor Sadiq Khan

‘London is better because of its Irish community’, claims Mayor Sadiq Khan

MAYOR of London Sadiq Khan has paid tribute to the Irish community for their “enormous contribution” to the city over many centuries.

Speaking ahead of the Mayor’s annual St Patrick’s Parade and Festival, which takes place this weekend, he told The Irish Post: “I am thrilled that London’s fantastic St Patrick’s Day celebrations will return on Sunday, March 12.

“Our annual parade and performances are a real highlight of our city’s cultural calendar and a symbol of the strength of the relationship between our two countries.”

He added: “London has the largest Irish community in the UK, and for centuries Irish Londoners have made an enormous contribution to London life.

“From running successful businesses and supporting public services, to the huge influence on our arts and cultural scene, Irish Londoners are integral to the fabric of our city.

“Indeed, London is a better, brighter and more prosperous place for the presence of our Irish communities.”

On Sunday, March 12, the Irish community in London - and friends of the community – will be in the capital to celebrate Ireland’s national day.

The annual St Patrick’s Parade will wind its way through the city’s streets from 12 noon, drawing more than 50,000 people to the streets to watch the colourful procession.

This year the parade will be led by a special guest Grand Marshal, who has yet to be revealed – so watch this space.

From 12-6pm Trafalgar Square will host a full programme of events, artists and activities, with the Sharon Shannon Trio headlining the main stage.

The full line-up will include family concerts, storytelling, children’s films and youth performances, as well community choirs, schools, dance troupes and more.

Celebrity chef Irish Anna Haugh will also be cooking up a storm on the day, and giving a live demonstration showing how you can create delicious Irish cuisine at home.

The Mayor, who is due to attend the event, added: “I look forward to joining together with London’s Irish community, as well as welcoming visitors from further afield, for an afternoon of world class entertainment in Trafalgar Square in honour of Ireland’s famous patron saint.

“Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona Daoibh.”