On the grounds of health and safety and traffic management, the Mullingar St Patrick’s Day parade will now be extended to Dominick Street, and not Mary Street as previously planned.
The decision was taken following advice from the gardaí at a meeting in the Greville Arms last night, Monday February 25.
Chairperson of the Dominick Street Traders association, Bill Collentine, welcomed the decision saying “The businesses, traders and residents are delighted. It’s good that the whole town is now involved. Hopefully it will be a fine day.”
Previously two hours of street entertainment had been planned for the Dominick Street area, this will now be moved to Castle Street and Mount Street, starting from 2pm.
Parade committee chairperson, Ruth Illingworth, denied the change in route had anything to do with pressure the committee had come under from the Dominick Street Traders.
“It avoids bottle necks at the top of Mary Street and big crowds on a narrow street. The extension of the route was taken on the advice of gardaí,” Ruth Illingworth told the Westmeath Examiner today.
“The Dominick Street Traders have promised us their support and we’ll be looking forward to having their support particularly on the day, as we will be needing man-power,” she said.
Earlier the decision to shorten the route of the parade had been taken because of the cost of barriers. Currently 600 have been ordered to barricade the town, running from the Millmount Road junction on Austin Friars Street. An estimated 120 more will be needed to barricade off Dominick Street.
“I’m hoping the barrier issue is not going to be a problem. But it may not be necessary to barrier off all of Dominick Street because of its width,” continued the town councillor.