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Port of Cork Celebrates Brittany Ferries 40 Years Linking Ireland and France

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In May 1978 Brittany Ferries launched their Cork-Roscoff ferry route from Cork City Quays with their flagship MV ‘Armorique’. At the time, all ferries departing Cork used the passenger terminal at Tivoli, before being transferred downriver to the dedicated Ringaskiddy Ferry Terminal which opened in 1982. Since then the passenger and freight routelinking Ireland and France has gone from strength to strength and today the Port of Cork acknowledged this service by wishing Brittany Ferries a Happy 40th Anniversary linking the two countries.

Port of Cork Chairman, John Mullins said: ‘It is with great pleasure that today we wish our long-term customer, Brittany Ferries, a very happy 40th anniversary linking Ireland and France. This company has shown true dedication in providing a reliable and attractive ferry service for both passengers and freight. On behalf of the Port of Cork I would like congratulate Brittany Ferries on the last the 40 years’ service and wish them every success for the next 40 years.’

Over the last 40 years Brittany Ferries have become the market leader on the Western Channel for passengers and freight and in 2018 this commitment was further endorsed when Brittany Ferries announced the first ever ferry service linking Ireland and Spain, with the new Ro-Pax twice weekly service from Cork to Santander. As well as serving Cork to Santander, this route also delivers an additional weekly return-sailing from Cork to Roscoff.

The new Ro-Pax ferry service was welcomed by the Port of Cork which has brought an increase in Spanish tourism to Cork and provides a very useful connection for exporting freight from Ireland to mainland Europe. This new service, the first direct service from Ireland to Spain, will offer the option for freight carriers and passengers to bypass the UK and French land-bridge to Spain as Brexit uncertainty continues. The Port of Cork hinterland is the key primary pharma, agriculture and food & drink output region in the country. This more efficient supply chain will offer freight customers a direct route to market enabling them to get their produce to market quicker than if they travel through traditional ports.

In 2017, Brittany Ferries carried more than 87,000 passengers, which was an increase of 4% on the previous season and contributing to the national economy. While France continues to be a popular travel destination for Irish travellers, the number of French people visiting Ireland showed no signs of waning as nearly 45,000 availed of the route, representing 52% of all passengers carried.

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Cork St Patrick’s Festival 15th to 18th March with over 50,000 visitors to attend the Parade on March 17th

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DKANE 20/02/2019 REPRO FREE Dancer Claudia Sargent and Martha Lopez pictured at the mural on Water St., Cork by artist Garreth Joyce for the launch of the Cork St Patrick’s Festival 2019. Organised by Cork City Council, the festival runs from March 15 to 18 next, with the parade starting at 1pm on Sunday March 17. See www.corkstpatricksfestival.ie
Pic Darragh Kane Photography

Organised by Cork City Council, The Cork St. Patrick’s Festival will take place from March 15th to March 18th 2019, with over 50,000 visitors expected to attend the Cork St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Sunday March 17th, celebrating the theme ‘Stories of Cork’.

Throughout the festival weekend, Cork will be a hive of activity with traditional Irish music from the Lee Sessions, exhibitions celebrating Irish culture, plus theatre, music, guided tours and talks.

The Cork St. Patrick’s Day Parade will be a vibrant carnival of colours, music, marching bands, amazing floats and community groups with up to 3,000 participants taking part, including some visiting from the USA.

Commissions by local arts organisations Cork Community Art Link and Dowtcha Puppets, plus national groups such as Spraoi, Buí Bolg and LuxE are in progress, creating innovative floats celebrating the theme.

Along with the entertaining flock of Cork Gulls created by Dowtcha Puppets, who have been working for weeks with local performing groups and St John’s College, a huge puppet of St. Patrick will accompany them on the route.

Cork Community Art Link will present a series of very “Cork” buildings who will roam the streets of Cork. There will be six floats of various sizes, each telling its own story through puppetry, performance and pop-up characters. These floats are being produced in conjunction with 11 local groups including Enable Ireland, The Brook Centre, Farranree Springboard, National Learning Network and Cork City Firebirds.

National arts organisations joining the parade in Cork include Waterford performance art group Spraoi, which will celebrate the origins of the word “langer” by unleashing a ‘langur monkey’ onto the street of Cork, while theatre performers from LuxE will tell the story of Sunniva, the Cork princess who became the patron saint of Western Norway.

Joining Corkonians from the United States for the Parade will also be marching bands from Indiana, North Dakota, Colorado and New York.

The parade will begin at 1pm on St. Patrick’s Day. Full details of parking, park and ride bus facilities and traffic restrictions will be available on www.corkstpatricksfestival.ie in advance of parade day. See Facebook @corkstpatricksfestival and Twitter @corkpaddysfest for updates and details of other activities to enjoy over the weekend.

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