Organisers of Galway 2020 say they are 'extremely disappointed' after the expected arrival of Storm Ciara forced the cancellation of tonight's opening ceremony.
This evening's event was planned as the finale to a week of celebrations marking the start of Galway's year as the European Capital of Culture but a statement this afternoon has confirmed that it won't go ahead.
In it, Galway 2020 said it is 'extremely disappointed to announce the cancellation of the finale of our Opening Ceremony this evening due to the severe national weather warnings in place for the whole of today, tonight and tomorrow.
'We have been in constant contact with the relevant authorities since the weather warnings were put in place earlier this week and, in the interests of the safety of the public the weather warnings currently in place mean that it has been deemed unsafe to go ahead.
'We are saddened for the community cast, our volunteers and the whole team who have worked so hard during the last weeks and months.
Today’s event would have marked the finale of what has been a hugely successful week-long series of events on the Fire Tour of lighting ceremonies that have lit up towns across the county.'
Galway 2020 is extremely disappointed to announce the cancellation of the finale of our Opening Ceremony this evening due to the severe national weather warnings in place for the whole of today, tonight and tomorrow.
Full statement below.https://t.co/AX2dhYcmY7#Galway2020 pic.twitter.com/t8LgMYMs4h
— Galway 2020 (@galway2020) February 8, 2020
Galway is expected to be one of the worst-affected counties when Storm Ciara arrives in Ireland later this evening. An orange wind warning is in place for the county from 1pm until 6pm today and a national warning is in place from 5am until 12pm on Sunday.
This week, celebratory events have been taking place in areas of Galway including Portumna and Athenry.