The Lord Mayor of Birmingham Councillor Carl Rice grabs a photo from the top of a double decker bus during the St patrick's Day parade (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
The Lord Mayor of Birmingham Councillor Carl Rice grabs a photo from the top of a double decker bus during the St patrick’s Day parade (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)

Thousands of people came out to marvel at the St Patrick’s Day parade in Birmingham yesterday.

Digbeth High Street was awash with green and gold as festivities launched early in the morning with bright costumes and colour, clearly starting as they meant to go on.

Sunday began with the city’s first ever St Patrick’s fun run along the Emerald Mile, before the opening of a fairground and street food stands in the Irish Quarter.

Floats make their way down Digbeth High Street as the Emerald Mile turns green for St Patricks Day (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
Floats make their way down Digbeth High Street as the Emerald Mile turns green for St Patricks Day (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)

The parade – the main event – set off from Camp Hill at noon, snaking its way along Digbeth High Street towards Selfridges and St Martin’s Church, and showcasing everything from traditional Irish dancers, youth groups, community clubs and floats to carnival costumes, Chinese dragons and plenty of drums, pipes and up-beat music.

Birmingham carnival dancers join the St Patrick's Day parade in Birmingham (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
Birmingham carnival dancers join the St Patrick’s Day parade in Birmingham (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
Thousands lined the streets in Biringham for this year's St Patrick's Day parade (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
Thousands lined the streets in Biringham for this year’s St Patrick’s Day parade (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)

Among the giant puppets, the flag bearers, the vintage motors, the smartly-dressed bands and the cross-cultural expressions of a great city, the Lord Mayor of Birmingham – Cllr Carl Rice – waved from the top of a VIP double-decker bus, greeting the thousands who were lining the streets to watch the parade go by.

Green confetti is blasted into the air in Digbeth High Street during the St Patrick's Day parade (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
Green confetti is blasted into the air in Digbeth High Street during the St Patrick’s Day parade (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)

Birmingham annually holds the largest St Patrick’s Day parade in Britain, with the parade covering a two-mile route through the city centre. According to organisers, it is the third biggest parade in the world, after Dublin and New York.

Dancers from Birmingham's Chinese community take part in the St Patrick's Day parade in Birmingham (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
Dancers from Birmingham’s Chinese community take part in the St Patrick’s Day parade in Birmingham (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)

The Birmingham City Council can no longer afford to fund the city’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations, in whole or part, and so organisers rely on fundraising and corporate sponsors to keep the event going. This year, surface roadworks company Kiely Bros. sponsored the event.

The landmark Selfridges building in Birmingham is lit up bright green this week in honour of St Patrick's Day (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)
The landmark Selfridges building in Birmingham is lit up bright green this week in honour of St Patrick’s Day (Photograph: Rangzeb Hussain)

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The religious and cultural celebration of St. Patrick’s Day is on Friday 17th March.

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https://www.iambirmingham.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/p3980037-1024x632.pnghttps://www.iambirmingham.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/p3980037-220x140.pngStaff ReporterEventsNewsWhat's OnBiringham,Brum,Brummies,Celebrations,community,Digbeth,England,Festive,Green,High Street,Irish,Irish Community,Irish quarter,Kiely Bros,Parade,St Paddys,St. Patrick,St. Patrick's Day,Street party,UKThousands of people came out to marvel at the St Patrick's Day parade in Birmingham yesterday. Digbeth High Street was awash with green and gold as festivities launched early in the morning with bright costumes and colour, clearly starting as they meant to go on. Sunday began with the city's first ever St Patrick's...The latest news, updates and events in Birmingham