The independent London newspaper

Green light for St Patrick’s Day celebrations

15 March, 2019 — By Róisín Gadelrab

Look out for Sick Love, left, and Aislinn Logan in Camden Market 

LONDON’S official St Patrick’s Day celebrations continue into their 17th year with a packed programme of events on and around March 17.

While the unofficial celebrations have been running for much longer, the St Patrick’s Day parade and Trafalgar Square show have been the pinnacle of the celebrations for nearly two decades. For the third consecutive year, Camden Market will be part of the Mayor of London’s official programme, running a prelude to the main event with a specially designed, free, all-Irish music trail and putting on a spread of Irish street food specials on March 16.

The live music trail will feature performances from bands and solo artists sourced by the London Irish Centre and the Mayor of London’s team in six locations across the market:

1.30pm –Video Blue, Bar 1974 (Middle Yard);
2.10pm – Swimmers Jackson, Dingwalls;
2.50pm – Locks, The Camden Pizza;
3.30pm – Nome King, Pamban;
4.10pm – Aislinn Logan, The Camden Grocer;
4.50pm – Sick Love, Dr Martens Boot Room.

Look out for street food with an Irish twist at various locations including Yorkshire Burrito’s Irish roast, Oh My Dog’s The O’Dogerty, Young Vegans’ vegan Guinness Steak and ale pie, Chin Chin Labs’ Lucky Four Leaf Clover ice cream and Cereal Killer Café’s Lucky Charms Superbowl.

Mac McDermott, Camden Market’s head of events, said: “We’re passionate about supporting emerging talent and are thrilled we can do this as part of the London-wide St Patrick’s Festival. We’d like to encourage both locals and international visitors to head down and discover the rising artists of the Irish music scene.”

And if that’s not enough, here’s a list of events leading up to and including St Patrick’s Day to make the celebrations last a little longer:


• Strings & Things, an original Irish folk/traditional crossover four-piece band play Brondes Age, Kilburn.

• Join a St Patrick’s Tea Dance with a two-course meal including favourite Bacon & Cabbage at London Irish Centre. Music from Mustang – 12.30pm, tickets £10.

• Then, in the evening, also at London Irish Centre, join Lisa Canny and band for an unusual fusion of modern Irish folk music and hip-hop. With support from multi-award-winning Americana singer-songwriter Megan O’Neill – 7.30pm, tickets £15.

• Original guitarist and songwriter Eric Bell, credited with creating the riff from Whiskey in the Jar, brings his band to reprise 50 Years of Thin Lizzy at Borderline with special guest Edgar Broughton – 7pm, £17.50.

• One character who can always be found playing gigs around this time is south Dubliner Damien Dempsey, who plays the Islington Assembly Hall – 7pm, £27.50.


• Irish folk and world music specialists KILA, featuring Rossa Ó Snodaigh, Colm Ó Snodaigh, Rónán Ó Snodaigh, Dee Armstrong, Eoin Dillon, Seanán Brennan, Brian Hogan and Dave Hingerty, play London Irish Centre – 7pm-11pm, £18-£20.

• Over in east London, Paddys in the Park take over Hoxton Trust Community Gardens on March 16-17 for a huge St Patrick’s weekend festival featuring live music, a traditional Irish band, singer-songwriters, Irish street food and more – 12pm, £10.


• The main event arrives on Sunday (March 17) with London St Patrick’s Day Festival proper, as the parade sets off at noon from Piccadilly, ending up in Trafalgar Square for a festival of Irish food, music, song, dance, culture and arts, running from 12pm to 6pm. Hosted by Bosco and Angela Scanlon, the main stage line-up will include: Bosco DJ Birthday Set; McGahan Lees Irish Dancers; Jacquelyn Hynes; Sample Answer; Feith An Cheoil; Hungry Grass; Track Dogs; Don Mescall and Band and Massaoke.

• At FEST, Camden, there’s a St Patrick’s Day Bottomless Brunch with a live soundtrack of soul music from Commitments tribute act The Kommitments.

• Also during the day, KILA headlines a St Patrick’s Family Fun event at London Irish Centre from 12pm. The day begins with children’s entertainment, face painting, games, lucky bingo, bubbles, treasure hunt and more before KILA will take to the stage for their interactive family show.

• Then, in the evening, KILA return to the stage for the adult crowd and London Irish Centre’s St Patrick’s BIG Gig. Also joining them will be The Phoenix Collective.

• There’s a Paddy Punk party with live music from London Irish psycho ceilidh six-piece Neck at The World’s End – and entry is free.

Archer Street, Soho, hosts Ceili Max – five traditional Irish musicians playing all the aul classics from 5pm to 8pm.


Share this story

Post a comment