Michael Staines
Michael Staines

21.54 20 Mar 2020


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This year’s Fleadh Cheoil has been cancelled because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Up to 700,000 people were expected to attend the event in Mullingar this August.

The 70th edition of the festival will return to the Westmeath town in 2021.

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Joe Connaire, chair of this year’s organising committee, said they considered postponing the festival before deciding that it should be cancelled.

“You are into shorter evenings, you are into maybe hurricane weather – all these aspects have to be taken into consideration,” he said.

“I as chairperson and a Comhaltas member over 35 years did not want to make any tough decision.

“But we made a decision for the right reasons and look, we will stay very positive and focus on bringing the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann back to Mullingar in 2021.”

Over 600,000 people attended last year’s event in Drogheda and organisers felt this year would be even bigger.

Mr Connaire said that, in the midst of a global pandemic, people’s wellbeing and health is all that matters.


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