Northern Ireland news

World landmarks 'going green' for St Patrick's Day

Lighthouse on the frozen lake in Finland joins Tourism Ireland’s 'Global Greening' initiative. Picture by Tourism Ireland

FROM a Game of Thrones-themed ice hotel in Lapland to a lion statue made from re-cycled flip flops in Kenya, a host of more unusual buildings and sites across the world are going green for St Patrick's Day.

Hundreds of landmarks in 48 countries will change colour as part of Tourism Ireland's 'Global Greening' initiative to celebrate the island of Ireland and St Patrick.

While the usual landmarks such as the Nelson's Column in London, Sydney Opera House and Niagara Falls will turn green, there are a number of quirky additions this year.

A 25.2 metre blue whale skeleton suspended from the ceiling in the Natural History Museum in London, a polar bear habitat in Ontario and a giant replica of the Canadian five-cent coin from 1951 are among the new sites taking part.

Niall Gibbons from Tourism Ireland said there are several "wonderful and unusual new additions" going green.

"Our aim is to bring a smile to the faces of people around the world and to convey the message that Ireland offers the warmest of welcomes and great fun, as well as wonderful scenery and heritage."

Meanwhile, the PSNI have warned St Patrick's Day revellers in Belfast that unruly behaviour "will not be tolerated".

Superintendent Robert Murdie said a number of events, including the St Patrick's Day parade and concert, 10K race, band parades, a protest and sporting fixtures, will take place in the city today.

"I would urge residents and visitors to the city to enjoy all that the city has to offer and to do so safely, but at the same time, I'm asking all of those with influence in the community to work with us to ensure that all events are equally supported and respected throughout the course of the day."

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