Ireland 2016 programme is officially launched

The Irish government have officially launched their programme to mark the centenary of the Easter Rising. 

The large scale, year long programme of activity will begin in August 2014 with a re-enactment of the funeral of Jeremiah O'Donovan Rossa, where Patrick Pearse delivered the famous 'Ireland unfree shall never be at peace' oration. 

Launched in Dublin on Tuesday night, organisers said: 'The commemoration will be measured and reflective, and will be informed by a full acknowledgement of the complexity of historical events and their legacy.'

A number of themes have been identified including:

• State Ceremonial events, such as ceremonies at the GPO on Easter Sunday and events to highlight the significance of women during the Easter Rising.

• Historical Reflection, with the commissioning of commemorative sculptures and a planting of an avenue of trees in Phoenix Park.

• The Living Language, which will feature lectures, debates and seminars and a range of Irish language arts events.

• Youth and Imagination will place children and young people at the centre of the programme with a proclamation day on March 15, 2016 where all schools will receive a copy of the 1916 proclamation and a copy of the Irish flag.

• Cultural Expression will use the creative community for a series of exhibitions, events and installations. Planning has commenced on a large-scale signature people's event to take place on Easter Monday 2016, telling the story from 1916 to 2016 though music, poetry, dance, theatre and more.

• Community Participation will seek to involve the community and voluntary sector in towns and villages across the country.

• A Global and Diaspora element will include the global Irish family with events in countries across the world.

Speaking at the launch, Taoiseach Enda Kenny described the programme as a 'once in a lifetime invitation' and the people should 'celebrate and have pride in Ireland's independence, and to honour those who gave their lives so that the dream of self-determination could be a reality.'

Click here to access the full programme for Ireland 2016.