WHILE there was widespread disappointment across Limerick at the cancellation of the New Year’s Eve fireworks display, the age-old tradition of the bells at St Mary’s Cathedral went ahead, lifting spirits of young and old.
For more than 100 years, people have gathered outside the cathedral to celebrate the start of a new year in the city – and that tradition shows no sign of abating.
And as the clocks struck into 2018, the spectacular sound of the tolling bells filled the air.
St Mary’s Fife and Drum Band were on hand to provide a rousing version of the traditional New Year’s song Auld Lang Syne.
The tradition was all the more special this year after news broke on Friday that the much anticipated fireworks display had to be cancelled due to a weather warning.
The planned festivities were part of a €40,000 celebration backed by Limerick City and County Council.
Thousands of people were expected to line Clancy Strand, the city’s boardwalks and bridges on New Year’s Eve for the first fireworks display in the city on December 31 in five years, while a specially commissioned video projection was due to animate the facade of King John’s Castle.
However, due to a high risk of flooding in the area, the event was postponed until St Patrick’s Day.
“It is just a postponement,” commented Cllr Daniel Butler.
“I'm looking forward to a bigger and better St Patrick's Day 2018!”