Northern Ireland news

Daniel O'Donnell draws tens of thousands of fans to Portadown

Daniel O'Donnell talks to one of his younger fans in Portadown
Mairead Holland

RECORD crowds of up to 40,000 turned out in a Co Armagh town to watch country music legend Daniel O'Donnell in action.

The singer was in Portadown town centre on Saturday for the annual Country Comes to Town festival.

And he also performed in a more unusual venue in the town later in the day - a unit in a business park.

The free gig at Storestuff was to celebrate the opening of the storage business which is owned by his son-in-law Gavin Shields.

Mr Shields (39) is married to Siobhan, the daughter of Daniel's wife Majella.

The 57-year-old Co Donegal crooner has said he plans to cut back on live shows to spend more time with his family.


John Wilson, festival joint chairman, said it was the biggest crowd in its 21-year history.

"He sang for about 30 minutes and he also took time to meet people and talk to them. I had never met him before but he was a great man and a great personality," he said.

Fellow organiser Bryan McLaughlin described the whole day as "amazing" and "the best ever".

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