Nottingham - St Patrick's Day Parade
w/e 21 March 2010
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Nottingham St Patrick's Day Parade Banner

March 17th 2010, St Patrick's Day, saw the eleventh annual parade and festival in Nottingham but it was actually the first I have witnessed. A banner left no one in any doubt as to reason for the parade as the bands and other participants made their way from the Forest to the steps of the Council House in the Market Square.

Head Decoration

Well before the parade arrived in the Market Square however, there were many colourful characters assembling there to greet it. Green of course was the predominant colour and someone had gone to a great HatsIrish Musicdeal of trouble to decorate this young man's hair (above) with a shamrock symbol, a pint of Guinness and even a harp on the other side of his head. For those who arrived without the requisite decor, there were plenty of opportunities to purchase Irish flags or jesters hats in three colours from the street traders or green hats (left) and even CDs of Irish Music (right) to mark the occasion.
Souvenir Stall

 Another stall seemed to be doing a good trade with other souvenirs including feather boas, balloons, sprigs of shamrock and many other trinkets too numerous to mention.

It wasn't only people who were dressed in green - this is Alfie with his owner as they waited near the steps of the Council House.
Mounted Police

And they didn't have to wait long as the parade led by three mounted police officers approached the Market Square via Queen Street and King Street.

LeprechaunPiperBehind the police and the banner was a large band and there were a number of other musicians in the parade including this ensemble playing traditional music from the back of a lorry. I also spotted a wee man impersonating a leprechaun dressed head to foot in green (left) but I was a little puzzled by the melody being played by a piper (right). Whilst both are Celtic nationalities "The Scottish Soldier (Green Hills of Tyrol)" didn't seem quite right on St Patrick's Day.

The parade also contained a large contingent of local schoolchildren all proudly displaying examples of the work they had produced to mark the day set aside for the patron saint of Ireland.
Pony And Trap

Another symbol associated with the Irish nation is the pony and trap and this example proved a popular attraction in the parade.
Market Square Crowd

Irish Stew & Soda BreadThe parade concluded in the Market Square where the assembled crowd listened to speeches by a number of people including Nottingham's Mayor and a guest from County Waterford. They were followed by an afternoon of entertainment that included a Showband, a Jazz Band and many dancers and singers whilst for the hungry there was plenty of Irish stew and soda bread (right) on sale.

As the parade passed, I switched the camera to video mode and this is the result.

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