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All smiles as Irish turn Buckingham Palace green

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Barry McGuigan and Niall Horan. Photo: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Barry McGuigan and Niall Horan. Photo: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Barry McGuigan and Niall Horan. Photo: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

LOUIS Walsh was "dying to see inside" Buckingham Palace ahead of a party hosted by Queen Elizabeth to celebrate Ireland's contribution to the UK.

The X Factor judge could not contain his excitement ahead of the event, telling RTE that it was "a fantastic day for Ireland".

Pointing out that he had worked in Britain for 30 years, he said: "I love it over here. Being Irish is such a big buzz in the UK now."

Walsh also joked the judges line-up for The X Factor's next season was so secret, he would not even be able to tell the Queen who would appear.

The invitations for the evening party were issued as Britain prepares for President Michael D Higgins' State visit next month.

One Direction's Niall Horan said he was surprised to get an invite. He added: "I saw an envelope which had the Buckingham Palace royal stamp on top and it was a bit 'OK what is this about?' And here we are three weeks later."

Other guests included former boxer Barry McGuigan, fashion designer Orla Kiely, singer Imelda May, Waterford wildlife conservation expert Dr Emma Verling and fishmonger Pat O'Connell.

DREAMS

Mr O'Connell said that never in his wildest dreams had he thought a joke to the British monarch on a visit to Ireland would win him an invite.

Pat made headlines when he told the Queen he hadn't been so nervous since his wedding day, prompting laughter from the royal.

The Queen later admitted that the Cork visit – where she was cheered by the huge crowds – was one of the highlights of her stay.

HNEWS@HERALD.IE


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