Thousands are expected to turn out for Derry’s Saint Patrick’s Day parade on Saturday with a new route through the city centre this year.
The Council has now issued traffic and travel advice for all those coming to catch the spectacle, which gets under way from 2pm at Bishop Street car park in the city centre,
Organisers at Derry City & Strabane District Council have advised that there may be some disruption to travel in and around the city centre to accommodate the new parade route.
This year the festivities will see over 600 performers participating in a colourful, family-friendly celebration with music, dance and animation galore.
Mayor Maolíosa McHugh said: “The St Patrick’s Spring Carnival always attracts a great family crowd, and this year with it falling on a Saturday we are expecting a high turnout.
“The new route will attract more people into the city centre, which will bring the entire place to life and add to the festival atmosphere. I’m really looking forward to the event which promises to be a cross-cultural extravaganza this year with community groups, schools and sporting clubs all involved.
“In order to ensure this is an enjoyable afternoon for everyone,
“I would ask that people heed the advice of stewards, and adhere to the restrictions regarding parking and road closures. I would finally like to wish everyone a happy, safe and responsible St Patrick’s celebration.”
After leaving Bishop Street Carpark at 2pm the parade will make its way along Bishop Street to the Diamond before travelling down Shipquay Street and on to Whittaker Street.
From here, it will turn left at Harbour Square Roundabout where it will pass via Custom House Street before turning right into Waterloo Place.
The parade will then turn into Strand Road where it will travel to the Strand Road Car Park at 3.15pm.
Members of the public are advised that there will be some disruption to normal travel movements during the afternoon so people should allow a little extra time when planning their journeys.
An accessible viewing area for people with limited mobility will be located on Whittaker Street opposite the Guildhall. It’s advisable that anyone who wishes to avail of this area, should arrive a little earlier in order to ensure unimpeded access before the surrounding areas become congested.
Due to the expected numbers, where possible, the public are strongly advised to use the public transport system or to consider walking to the event. Details of all buses can be found by visiting www.translink.co.uk/Routes-and-Timetables
Cityside car parking areas available on the day include Foyleside Shopping Centre Car Park East, Foyleside West and Quayside Shopping Centre, Foyle Road, Magee Campus (Lawrence Hill), Victoria Market, Queen’s Quay, Society Street, Carlisle Road and William Street. The car park at the Council Offices on Strand Road will also be opened to allow access to the general public on the day.
Carparks in the Waterside area include Alfred Street, Bond’s Hill, Distillery Brae, Simpsons Brae, Spencer Road and Old Bridge House.
Motorists should expect delays when exiting some car parks during the parade.
People should note that car parks at Strand Road, Foyle Street and Bishop Street will be closed on Saturday.
Blue Badge holders are advised to use available public, disabled car parking spaces. Accessible parking for the viewing area platform will be accommodated in the Foyle Street Car Park.
Drivers are reminded that normal on street parking restrictions will be in place and that they should avoid parking anywhere where they may be blocking entrances to residences or businesses or where they may be obstructing emergency access. It is vital, therefore, that people use the available car parks.
Vehicles stopping to drop off passengers are advised to park in a safe location and to avoid the immediate vicinity of the City Centre, in order to minimise traffic congestion.
Motorists are advised to expect some diversions, with a number of planned road closures in the interests of public safety. These include Bishop Street, Shipquay Street and Strand Road, which will be restricted for varying lengths of time during the afternoon between 12pm and 4pm. Alternative diversion routes will be available during these times.
There will also be a lane restriction on the Foyle Embankment on the city bound approach from Translink Bus Depot, operational from 1pm until approximately 4pm.
Please note that all times are approximate and that road restrictions and diversions will be kept to the minimum length necessary to ensure safety.
For a full listing of what is happening log on to www.derrystrabane.com/springcarnival
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