Carnival atmosphere in Magherafelt

THOUSANDS turned out for the big St Patrick’s Day celebration in Magherafelt on Sunday.

There was a carnival atmosphere in the South Derry town for the event which attracted people from over a wide area.

Luckily the rain stayed away as the 20 bands made their way round the town leading AOH divisions from seven counties Derry, Tyrone, Armagh, Antrim, Down, Donegal and Cavan.

The celebration was hosted by Desertmartin AOH Division 30 and started last Friday night with a variety concert in St Mary’s Hall, Desertmartin, which featured a number of artistes from diverse cultural backgrounds.

After the platform proceedings on Sunday afternoon in the town centre, the parade moved off from Garden Street and made its way along Rainey Street, Broad Street, Market Street, Kirk Avenue, Moneymore Road and back into the Diamond before dispersing at Union Street car park.

“It was a large turnout - both locals and visitors - and I think everybody enjoyed themselves,” said one of the organisers. “It was good to see so many families spectating along the processional route.”