Cork’s Lord Mayor Cllr. Micheal O’Connell said that the Queen’s decision to engage in an impromptu walkabout was a testament to the huge excitement and warmth that she experienced among the thousands of people who lined the streets of Cork to welcome her.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on her Visit to Cork's English Market on 20 May 2011
It’s estimated that more than 30,000 people crowded into Cork City Centre from early morning to catch a glimpse of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh on the final leg of their historic visit to Ireland.
Lord Mayor Cllr Micheal O’Connell said, “We had expected 25,000 people to come into the City Centre but the Gardai now estimate that more than 30,000 people came to raise a cheer to the Queen and extend a special ‘Cork royal welcome’ to her. St. Patrick Street - which was fully pedestrianised for locals to celebrate - South Mall and the Grand Parade were full to capacity and it was an extraordinary sight. You could feel the energy from the crowds. It’s a very proud day for Cork City and our people and I would like to thank everyone for making the Queen’s final stop in Cork one of the most fun, relaxed and celebratory on her trips.”
Cork City Manager Tim Lucey added:
“I’m delighted that Her Majesty The Queen took the time to walk around the Grand Parade and soak up the atmosphere and experience the people, the passion and everything that has made this city famous for being a City of Welcomes. It was a huge honour to host the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh in Cork City and I’m thrilled that she got to enjoy a more informal and fun experience to end her stay with us in Ireland. We expect another Royal visit far sooner to Cork City than the past 100 years we’ve waited. We feel we’ve made a new friend today and we extend a hand of friendship and warm welcome to the rest of the Royal family - and indeed all our friends in the UK - to come and visit us here in Cork.”
A Royal Visit Itinerary
HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and HM Queen Elizabeth II in conversation with Tom Durcan, Chairperson Market Traders Association in the company of the Lady Mayoress of Cork ,Catherine O' Connell and Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr. Michael O Connell.
The Queen spent over 20 minutes in Cork’s English market where she took time to chat with several market traders, enquiring as to the history and provenance of the food produce on many of the stalls. She spoke with traders of the following stalls:
Ashley O’Neill, Ashley O’Neill Butchers
Pat O’Connell, K O’Connell Fish
Micheal Herlihy, The Farmer
Isabelle Sheridan, On the Pig’s Back
Sheila Fitzpatrick, The Alternative Bread Company
Tom Durcan, Durcan’s Meats
Tobias Simmonds, The Real Olive Company
Jerry Moynihan, Moynihan’s Poultry
Pictured above is the Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. Michael O' Connell presenting HM Queen Elizabeth with a commemorative brooch specially commissioned for her visit in front af a plaque she had unveiled marking her historic visit to the English Market. Also pictured are Catherine O' Connell Lady Mayoress and HRH Prince Philiip, Duke of Edinburgh
HRH Prince Philip was presented with two books at the Fountain of Cork’s English Market, ‘the Coast of Cork’ and ‘Serving a City’ - a history of the English Market by historians Donal and Diarmuid O’Drisceoil.
Pictured with the presentation hamper of market produce which was presented to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on her visit to the Englidh Maket on Friday May 20th 2011 are: (l-r) Rebecca Harte Farmgate Restaurant, Diarmuid O' Donovan Assistant CEO Evening Echo, Aidan Cotter CEO Bórd Bia, Jerry Moynihan Moynihan's Poulty, Rory McCann Localmarkets.ie who will be making replica hampers available online and Tom Durcan Chairperson Market Traders Association.
Later Queen Elizabeth visited Tyndall institute, where she enjoyed a tour of the state of the art research facility that is at the forefront of Ireland’s ‘smart economy’. The Queen viewed four main technology demonstrations.
H.M. Queen Elizabeth II also met with representatives of high-tech companies based in Cork and other parts of Ireland such as Pfizer, Johnson and Johnson, Intel, BT and Creganna along with representatives from the community and youth in the Cork region including Angie Benhaffaf and their twin boys Hussein and Hussan. Edward Kiely, the Surgeon at Great Ormonde Street Hospital who operated on the conjoined twins, an alumni of UCC, was also introduced to the Queen.
The atmosphere was electric in Cork City and the party continued long into the night with a stunning line up of entertainment turning Cork City Centre into a veritable street party.