Tuesday 25 September 2018

It's hotter than Ibiza as Ireland finally gets a weather break

Five year old Dervla Duffy from Clontarf pictured with her dog Kali a two year old Labrador, as they paddle in the sea at Dollymount strand.Picture Credit: Frank Mc Grath
Five year old Dervla Duffy from Clontarf pictured with her dog Kali a two year old Labrador, as they paddle in the sea at Dollymount strand.Picture Credit: Frank Mc Grath
Star Wars fans dressed as Darth Vader and Chewbacca on a boat trip to the Skellig Islands, Co. Kerry, during Ireland's inaugural May the Fourth Festival to celebrate Star Wars. Photo: PA

Ian Begley and Ralph Riegel

Ireland will be hotter than Lanzarote and Ibiza as temperatures soar over the bank holiday weekend.

After a week of rain and murky skies, Met Éireann predicts the country will enjoy long spells of warm, dry and sunny weather, with temperatures reaching 21C.

It was good news for the 40,000 Ed Sheeran fans, or 'Sheerios', who crowded into Páirc Uí Chaoimh for the opening gig of his sell-out nine-concert Irish tour last night. It was the first concert in the ground since its €70m refurbishment.

The Suffolk-raised star achieved something Prince, Michael Jackson and even Bruce Springsteen couldn't - selling out three successive concerts at Cork GAA headquarters.

Fans arrived at the stadium early in the day. Elena Smyth travelled to Cork from Clontarf, Dublin, with her Ed Sheeran-devoted daughters, April and Emily.

"We couldn't wait for the concert - it is absolutely fantastic," they admitted.

The three concerts are expected to generate a €60m boost for Cork - with the nine concerts in total expected to generate an economic fillip of €200m for the four city venues.

Sheeran opened the set with hit single 'Castle On The Hill'.

"Hello Cork," he said. "So great to here for the opening gig - thanks for coming out to be here."

There was rapturous applause when he arrived back on stage for the encore in a Cork GAA jersey.

The singer invited Beoga on stage to perform 'Galway Girl' and 'Nancy Mulligan'.

The city revelled in a festive atmosphere in the build-up to the concert - Idaho Café was selling ginger ice-cream and customers with red hair enjoyed a discount in many city pubs.

Sheeran - along with the rest of the country - will be able to make the most of the bank holiday weekend and enjoy seemingly endless sunshine.

Met Éireann forecaster Liz Gavin said: "Overall, we're looking at a very sunny and warm bank holiday weekend.

"We believe temperatures will range from 14C to even 21C in some places, particularly in eastern counties and also in the midlands.

"However, parts of the west and north-west will stay fairly cloudy at times with the possibility of patchy drizzles."

Tomorrow will feel slightly cooler near coastlines, with top temperatures of 14C and 16C. Inland temperatures will be warmer, with highs of 19C to 21C. Winds will be mainly light.

It will be dry again for Bank Holiday Monday, with Met Éireann saying there will be "plenty of sunshine on offer".

For those who want to soak up the rays, a host of other events are on offer this weekend.

The Riverfest festival, for instance, will see Limerick city become a flurry of activity at its annual event.

Amongst the highlights are the Riverfest BBQ Competition at noon today which will have plenty of tasty treats of all varieties; the Bon Secours Great Limerick Run for those who want to stretch their legs; and an array of water sports on the Shannon.

Creativity

The annual Bealtaine festival is already in full swing and brings together people from all over Ireland to foster and inspire creativity among older people.

The Dublin Dance Festival is also another great option to fill your bank holiday weekend. This weekend's highlights include Akram Khan's 'Giselle' from English National Ballet at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, and 'Catedral' in the Abbey Theatre.

Irish Independent

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