Royal Irish prepare for socially-distanced St Patrick’s Day celebrations

Rebecca Black, PA
·1-min read

The Royal Irish regiment is set to mark St Patrick’s Day with a socially-distanced shamrock presentation, as well as a video game challenge.

March 17 has been marked by the Royal Irish since 1900 when Queen Victoria ordered the wearing of a sprig of shamrock by soldiers and officers.

However, coronavirus regulations have meant a major adaptation for the traditional celebrations in 2021 by 1 Royal Irish at their base at Tern Hill, outside Market Drayton in Shropshire.

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The shamrock presentation has been planned to be socially distant, while later a video game challenge will take place.

1 Royal Irish Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Tom Forrest said: “St Patrick’s day is usually a great opportunity for the regimental family to gather as one and recognise the distinction and gallantry of the Irish Regiments during the relief of Ladysmith in the Boer War.

“Any opportunity to display our Irish heritage is always embraced and we look forward to hopefully connecting to reminisce together next year, over a pint of the black stuff.”

Ranger Aaron Mooney, 21, from Belfast, said despite the celebrations being on a smaller scale, St Patrick’s Day remains an important day for the soldiers.