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Model agency owner Celia Holman Lee has hit back at claims that the Rose festival is "old fashioned"

The Limerick Celebrity Salon winner, who organised last night's fashion show in the Dome, has revealed how she's a long-term supporter of the event and hit back at its detractors.

The Limerick Celebrity Salon winner, who organised last night's fashion show in the Dome, has revealed how she's a long-term supporter of the event and hit back at its detractors.

"All people have to do is to have a look at the RTE viewing figures to see how popular it is. The figures are always phenomenal," she said. "You can say what you like about it but this is Irishness at its best, it's all about what we do and how we do it -- this is our heritage and people love watching it on TV.

"The standard among the Roses this year is just amazing. I've been reading all their biographies and some of the backgrounds are very impressive. They're all great achievers with huge accomplishments."

She went on to say how it was a huge pity that her fellow Munster man Ronan O'Gara couldn't help judge the competition. But she said that his rugby must always take priority. "It would have been great to have him down but the pressure they're under is just unbelievable. Brian O'Driscoll couldn't even go to the royal wedding because of his schedule. That's just the way it is with them," she added.


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