Queen's Launches St Pat's Festival
Queen's have launched the programme for their St Patricks Day festival, which it hopes will curb anti-social behaviour seen in previous years.
The extensive programme includes comedy, music, sport, art and a spiritual element, often absent from this religious festival. The programme was put together in collaboration with the University of Ulster and has the backing of both University Student Unions.
In a joint statement Professor Gerry McCormac of Queen's University and Professor William Clarke of the University of Ulster said, "Last year, as many of you will be aware, St Patrick’s Day was marred for long-term residents and many students by displays of anti-social behaviour. This year, we hope, will be very different. The Festival is a tangible example of our determination that St Patrick’s Day should be celebrated as it should be – as a Holy Day and a holiday."
Chairman of the Holyland Residents' group, David Farrell, said that "any degree of positive change is welcome and anything that has the potential to make a difference in relationships is a positive bonus." However he added that if there was "any breach of rules about anti-social behaviour, it needs to be dealt with quickly and efficiently."
QUBSU President, Ben Preston, said that he thought the festival was a good idea and hoped to see it made an "annual and successful occasion."
The festival at Queen's will not however be alcohol free and there are fears that some students may come to the festival with the intention of getting drunk.
The University has not yet commented on how it intends to deal with students, if they engage in unacceptable conduct next Friday.