Derry wins bid to hold Fleadh Cheoil

Monday 30 January 2012 12.27
Derry has succeeded in its bid to host Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in 2013
Derry has succeeded in its bid to host Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in 2013

Derry has succeeded in its bid to host Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in 2013.

It will be the first time the event will be held in Northern Ireland and will coincide with the city's hosting of the UK City of Culture.

Derry beat off competition from Sligo and Ennis to host the event.

Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann is a ten-day event embracing all aspects of Irish traditions including music, song, dance and an Gaeilge.

The event is expected to generate an income of up to €40m for the region.

On Thursday the Ulster Council of Comhaltas Ceoltóiri Éireann reversed an earlier decision not to back Derry's application to hold the all-Ireland fleadh next year.

Last Sunday, executive members of the council said they would not be able to support the bid due to the potential threat posed by dissidents.

In the run-up to that decision, some members had expressed concern at the possibility of Derry holding the fleadh in the same year it held the title "UK City of Culture".

Welcoming the decision earlier today, Northern Ireland Culture Minister Carál Ní Chuilín said next year was shaping up to be a cultural extravaganza for the county.

First Minister Peter Robinson said the "vote of confidence" in Derry will generate significant cultural and economic benefit for the area.