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22nd Aug 2018

100,000 people will get to see the Pope in the Popemobile in Dublin city centre this weekend

Kate Demolder

Pope Francis will take to the streets of Dublin city at 4.15pm on Saturday.

Up to 100,000 spectators will be able to witness Pope Francis being transported around the city centre in the Pope Mobile prior to his arrival at Croke Park this Saturday evening.

Pat Leahy, Assistant Garda Commissioner, confirmed the news on RTÉ Radio with Miriam O’Callaghan on Wednesday morning when discussing logistics and security surrounding the Pope’s visit.

“We’re ready to go, the planning that has gone into this is enormous,” Leahy said.

He also confirmed that Pope Francis will make his way through the city centre in the Pope Mobile after he finishes at the Pro-Cathedral at around 4.15pm.

Gardaí expect up to 100,000 people in the city centre to view the motorcade.

Pope Francis, of course, will travel to Ireland this weekend to partake in The World Meeting of Families at the RDS.

On criticism surrounding delivery of information on road closures, Leahy told O’Callaghan that they can’t give out information before they have a definitive answer, saying that information around these kinds of events does come out slowly.

“The M50 is open on both days… there will be some restrictions on the Sunday where you won’t get by, the Port Tunnel is open for business, the East Link is open for business… the city is not in lockdown,” he said.

Dublin Bus announced earlier in the week that they would not be providing real-time information for the duration of the Papal visit.

Leahy also went on to say that the first real opportunity on Saturday for the public to see the Pontiff will be on O’Connell Street, Westmoreland Street, Dame Street and Christchurch as he makes way to Brother Kevin in the Capuchin Day Centre shortly after 4pm.

Image via Transport for Ireland

“That’s the first real open event, and we would expect anything up to 100,000 people in to view that,” Leahy said.

The Vatican confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that Pope Francis will meet with Irish victims of clerical abuse during his trip to Ireland.

The meeting will be strictly private, ensuring that the Pontiff can listen to victims. Details of the meeting are not yet known.

A full itinerary for the Pope’s visit to Ireland is available here.