Now in it’s sixteenth year, Londoners and visitors alike took to the streets around Trafalgar Square and Westminster to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in a three-day festival that started on Friday 16th March and ended on Sunday 18th March with the St Patrick’s Day parade, which is the seventeenth to be held in London.
Every year, on 17th March, Ireland celebrates St Patrick, one of its patron saints, with a somewhat lively national holiday and traditional Irish feast. Whilst we do not have a public holiday here in the UK, London, like many cities around the world, puts on their own celebrations to mark this special day in the calendar. New York City putting on perhaps the largest parade of all through the streets of Manhattan.
This year’s London St Patrick’s Day parade started at midday and we were there to watch and take photographs of the wonderful marching bands, colourful and elaborate floats and flamboyant pageantry.
The parade started from Piccadilly and made its way pass some of London’s most famous landmarks such as Trafalgar Square, The iconic Ritz Hotel on Piccadilly, and of course Whitehall.
More than 125,000 people enjoyed this year’s celebrations, with families travelling into London to enjoy the lively music and ceilidh dancing. There is plenty laid on to keep the children happy with many people taking in the Irish art exhibition and film festival whilst others enjoyed Irish walking tours. There was also plenty to eat and drink at the Irish Street Food Market.
These photographs focus on some of the individuals who were either performing or in some way connected with the parade and celebrations on the day. As you can see, age was no obstacle!
Editorial by Simon Burrell, Editor-in-Chief of Our Man On The Ground and photographs by Jonathan Kemp, a London-based photographer specialising in portrait and event photography.