A ST PATRICK'S Day parade has had to be cancelled in one town in Ireland because the main street is in such a bad state of repair.
The organising committee in Athboy, Co Meath, says it is "devastated," at having to take the decision.
"We got advice from the underwriters in our insurance company and they stated that due to health and safety (concerns), we should cancel the parade," said committee treasurer Frances Walsh.
He said the uneven and pitted surface "has the main street a disaster area".
"We were afraid the floats on the tractors and trailers might not be safe. A playgroup said they might have to ask parents of the children for their permission. We had to explain the situation to the underwriters and their advice was not to hold it," she added.
"It was to be our 30th anniversary and we had the silver bands booked from Navan and Kentstown as well as Athboy. But now, with little children and majorettes as well as people carrying drums, we got afraid of what might happen."
Locals say the main street has borne the brunt of works by the council to upgrade the water and sewerage in the town.
Meath County Council yesterday said it has begun a €1.5m scheme to reinstate the road and footpaths, which will take 32 weeks to complete.