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Irvine Welsh backs bridge for fellow Hibs man Connolly

Scottish author Irvine Welsh is the latest high profile cultural figure to back the campaign to name the new transport bridge over the Liffey in Dublin in honour of James Connolly.

Welsh told LookLeft, “Connolly was a true man of the people, a great socialist and anti-imperialist. He was also the best kit man Hibernian FC ever had.”

Both the Trainspotting author and Connolly were ardent fans of Edinburgh football club Hibernian, Connolly working as a kit man for the club in his youth.

Other cultural figures who are backing the campaign include singers Imelda May, Christy Moore, Andy Irvine, Mary Black and Frances Black; actors Bryan Murray, Gabriel Byrne and Jer O’Leary; comedians Brendan Grace and Brendan O’Carroll; poets Theo Dorgan and Paula Meehan, as well as artist Robert Ballagh and Dublin GAA star Alan Brogan.

Pledging his support to the campaign Brendan O’Carroll, said that, having once been a member of “Robert Emmet branch of the James Connolly Youth Movement”, he fully recognised the importance of Connolly’s legacy.

James Connolly Bridge campaign coordinator, Brendan Carr, said: “What we are trying to do is remember the struggle of the people of Dublin 100 years ago and the link we have between 1913 and 1916 is James Connolly.”

The public transport bridge from Marlborough Street to Hawkins Street is due to open in summer 2013, a year of special significance to the trade union movement as it marks the 100th anniversary of the 1913 Lockout and comes just three years before the centenary of the 1916 Rising.

Article published in LookLeft magazine Vol.2 No.13

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