VIDEO - Hundreds attend Easter Rising re-enactment in Guildhall Square

Hundreds of people attended a special re-enactment of the 1916 Easter Rising in Guildhall Square on Thursday evening.

Thursday, 12th May 2016, 9:07 pm
Updated Thursday, 12th May 2016, 11:16 pm
One of the scenes from 'The Dawning of the Day' in Guildhall Square on Thursday evening.

The special re-enactment was organised by Gasyard Feile in partnership with Coiste Derry 1916.

The Guildhall took on the guise of Dublin’s General Post Office which was the Rebels’ headquarters during the Rising.

An actor, playing the part of Rising leader, Padraig Pearse, read the Proclamation of the Republic on the steps of the Guildhall before retreating inside.

One of the scenes from 'The Dawning of the Day' in Guildhall Square on Thursday evening.

The re-enactment came to life when the battle between the Rebels and British Army played out in front the crowd.

Pyrotechnics mocked the sounds of explosions and gun fire and large plumes of black smoke burst out in different parts of Guildhall Square.

After six days the rebels surrendered to the British.

Fourteen of the men who took part in the Rising, including Padraig Pearse were executed by the British over a nine day period.

A section of the crowd just before the start of 'The Dawning of the Day'.

All of the executions were acted out to dramatic effect on a stage in Guildhall Square and the audience was given a fantastic insight into the final moments of the leaders through the reading out of letters sent to loved ones before the executions.

Men, women and some children shed tears while listening to Padraig Pearse’s final letter to his mother.

“It was very emotional and I have no problem admitting that I cried,” said mum of two, Ciara Duffy.

“I had heard of the Easter Rising but I never knew the details. That’s why I came here - I wanted to bring my children along too and they really enjoyed it. It was amazing and it’s made me want to find out more about what happened in Ireland at that time.”

The re-enactment of the execution of Easter Rising leader, Joseph Plunkett.

Newly elected Sinn Fein MLA for Foyle and Deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness attended the event, as did Mayor of Derry and Strabane Councillor Elisha McCallion and Sinn Fein MEP, Martina Anderson.

One of the scenes from 'The Dawning of the Day' in Guildhall Square on Thursday evening.
A section of the crowd just before the start of 'The Dawning of the Day'.
The re-enactment of the execution of Easter Rising leader, Joseph Plunkett.