Friday 20 January 2017

The dark side of the St Patrick's Day celebrations

Published 19/03/2016 | 02:30

Rubbish in Temple Bar. Photo: Caroline Quinn
Rubbish in Temple Bar. Photo: Caroline Quinn

Events in the Holylands area of Belfast didn't pop up on the radar much amid the St Patrick's Day coverage. It's gone down in folk legend as the 'Battle of Agincourt Avenue'. The area was engulfed with teenagers and students holding an open-air drinking session. Children as young as 15 were drinking openly on the streets in scenes that inevitably turned violent.

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A specially kitted-out bus - a cross between a mini A&E and a drunk tank - was parked near Queen's University to help anyone who needed treatment for the effects of drink.

The scenes of teenage drinking were replicated across the rest of the island, albeit in a more low-profile fashion.

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