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  1. ITV Report

President Higgins set to discover Liverpool’s link with Ireland

Irish President Michael D Higgins addresses a business lunch with state agencies at the Hilton Hotel in Liverpool Photo: Danny Lawson/PA

Ireland’s president will discover Liverpool’s links to the country as he spends the final day of his visit to England in the city.

Michael D Higgins started his three-day trip with a day of engagements in Birmingham on Monday, before spending Tuesday in Liverpool.

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On Wednesday, he and wife Sabina are due to meet members of the Irish diaspora at the Liverpool Irish Association headquarters, before visiting the city’s Central Library where they will view material of Irish interest, including documents relating to those who fled from the Great Famine.

They will then visit the Liverpool World Museum where they will see artefacts which reflect the city’s history as a port with significant Irish and other migratory influences.

On Tuesday, the President called for the “warm relationship” between Ireland and the UK to survive whatever the outcome of the “Brexit odyssey” as he addressed a business lunch.

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Earlier in the day, he and wife Sabina renewed their friendship with the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall when the foursome visited Liverpool University’s Institute of Irish Studies.

At the start of his visit, the President gave a speech at Birmingham Town Hall in which he said the “dark days” of the UK and Ireland’s relationship were “behind us”.

Paying tribute to the 21 people who lost their lives in the 1974 Birmingham pub bombings, Mr Higgins said:”The relationship between Ireland and the UK is now one of co-operation, strength and friendship.”

The President and Mrs Higgins are due to depart for Dublin later on Wednesday.