It was a very busy weekend for The Council of Irish County Associations, with most of the officers mingling with members of business and community groups at the St Patrick's reception at the Embassy of Ireland.

The following day our chairperson, Larry O'Leary, was a guest of the Irish Navy on the LE James Joyce, docked at London Bridge. The CICA ceremonial tricolour was handed over to Lt Michael Devanny to carry at the head of the city's St Patrick's Day parade the following day.

The big day dawned a bright sunny morning as all headed for The London Irish Centre for Mass for the feast of St Patrick, celebrated by Fr Gerry McFlynn of the Irish Chaplaincy accompanied by the beautiful music of Feith an Cheoil. Present was Rachel Ingersoll representing the Embassy of Ireland.

Afterwards, 110 people sat down to a hearty Irish breakfast sponsored by Clonakilty Black Pudding. Many thanks to them and also to Tess McGuire, Maeve Heath and Clara Power who worked tirelessly to ensure everyone was fed  before heading to the parade.

A large convoy left the Irish centre and headed towards Green Park. A few of our senior citizens were put on the Tea bus and had a lovely journey with refreshments as they moved along the parade route.

Up front, the CICA tricolour was carried by the navy, followed by our St Patrick Pennant carried by Con Dee and then followed the CICA banner. After that came members of the navy, and following on thirty eight members of the Fr Murphy's Camogie and Ladies Gaelic Football Club who carried all the County and provincial flags. They were accompanied by the young members of the O'Connor school of Irish dancing who danced their way along the route.

It was one of the best parades in living memory with large crowds lining the whole route and County association floats and walking groups scattered throughout the Parade.

Afterwards it was up to a crowded Trafalgar square. The CICA stall was collecting data for a free raffle, which was drawn in the afternoon. Congratulations to the two winners, Edward Doyle (Donegal) and Kieran Bradbeer (Kerry) each winning three bottles of Doran Vineyards fine wines. The stall was honoured to have Edwin Doran vist us and donate several bottles of wine for a tasting session, which made it a very popular venue. There was so much going on, and overall it was a very exciting and successful weekend.

The day begins with a very busy Sunday morning with our Mass and Full Irish Clonakilty breakfast. From there, follows the big parade where all our county flags will be carried by the Fr Murphy’s Girls accompanied by the Irish Navy. Afterwards the CICA have a stall on Trafalgar Square where we will hand out leaflets to be entered into a free draw for some fine wine from Doran Vineyards.¬†Furthermore, we launch our silent auction in aid of our Welfare fund charity with the star prize being accommodation for 3 nights for 8 people in the lodge at Doran Vineyards in the Western Cape of South Africa. We look forward to seeing everyone there!

On the morning of our national feast we hold Mass at The London Irish centre, celebrated by Fr Gerry McFlynn, with music by Feith an Cheoil. This will be followed by the traditional full Irish breakfast, with the meat products supplied by Clonakilty Black Pudding. A fine way to get ready for the day.
Everyone is welcome to the Mass and for the breakfast we are asking a small donation of £6.00 per person, to cover the cost of the chefs and serving staff and the extra food items. Straight after breakfast we will leave for Green Park for The City's St Patrick's Day Parade, where the Fr Murphy's Ladies will carry the county and provincial flags, up at the head of the parade together with the standard of St Patrick and the CICA banner.



































































TEL: JOHN GILTENAN: 0795 6855957