Fans across Ireland braved the weather to queue outside bookshops for the midnight launch of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows'.

Eason and Son on O'Connell Street in Dublin laid on entertainment for the die-hard Harry Potter fans waiting to be among the first people in the country to buy copies of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows', the seventh and final novel in JK Rowling’s Harry Potter series.

The fans, many in fancy dress, were allowed enter the shop at 11pm and at one minute past midnight, Lorcan Smith from County Meath became the first person in the store to get his hands on a copy of the hugely anticipated book. Finally owing the book after such a long wait,

Just feels great.

Another emotional fan who waited for 10 hours to get her copy of the book says,

By tomorrow you’ll probably know what's happening as you’re going to read it all night.

Eason Children's book buyer, David O'Callaghan believes Harry Potter has instilled a love of reading in young people and he thinks they will now be inspired to read to other authors such as Philip Pullman and Darren Shan.

In the coming days 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' is expected to sell over a quarter of a million copies in Ireland.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 21 July 2007. The reporter is Sinéad Crowley.