Who are we?
The Liverpool Irish Centre is a community and social hub at the heart of the Irish community on Merseyside. Originally situated at 127 Mount Pleasant, we moved to our current location in 1999. Our mission is to promote Irish Heritage & Culture, provide a space for this to happen, and support members of the Irish Community in doing so. Not only that, we serve the wider community too and seek to bring people from all backgrounds together.
The Centre serves the thriving Irish and local community, supporting a range of groups from Irish dancing, music and language to mental health awareness and well-being. The Centre promotes culture, heritage and creativity through plays, pantomimes, reading groups and partnerships with local writers and writing groups.
The Centre is a second home for those living away from the emerald isle. We show every single GAA match, stock a range of Irish foods, serve a fine pint of Guinness and offer the widest selection of Irish whiskies in Merseyside.
We're keen to support the communities of Liverpool—the place that opened its door for the Irish in their time of need. We partner with local groups and communities, offer opportunities to local people and support local businesses.
The Centre is available for hire for functions, conferences and parties. We host regular events throughout the year, from concerts, comedy nights, quizzes and pensioner afternoons, as well as our regular events. You can find out more using the tabs at the top of the page.
There were many attempts throughout the early twentieth century by the Irish Population in Liverpool to find a cultural and communal premises. The formation of organisations such as The Council of Irish National Societies (1929 and the Irish Association of Liverpool and District (1930), The Irish Association of Merseyside (1947) and the Liverpool Feis Committee (1949) can all be seen as successful attempts to maintain the cultural heritage of the Irish population of Liverpool.
1964 - 1997
The Liverpool Irish Centre officially began in December 1964, at the premises of 127 Mount Pleasant. The formal opening took place on 1st Febraury (St Brigid's Day) 1965. In the year following it's opening the Irish Centre's membership grew to 1,635 and was home to many different organisations including John Mitchels GAA club, Bolger Irish Dancers, Liverpool Pipe Band, Finn Harps Soccer Club and Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann Liverpool Branch, The Liverpool Ceili Band was particularly successful during these years winning All-Ireland Titles in both 1963 and 1965.
In 1973, after the completion of extensive renovations, the Irish Centre was relaunched with the explicit aim of being "a spiritual home for Irish people in and around Liverpool, and a Centre in the true sense of the word. The Irish Centre also aimed to maintain Irish culture by continuing to emphasise Irish traditions, songs, dance, music, goods and sports. Welfare support has always been a core part of the centre's constitution, this included support during at the worst of The Troubles during the 1970s. By 1989 the welfare section had grown to warrant the establishment of an independent charity, 'Irish Community Care', who we have remained partner's with to the present day,
By 1991, the large listed building at Mount Pleasant was becoming nonviable, and by 1992 the Irish Community no longer owned the premises. It was taken over by businessman Michael Finnegan, who facilitated activities until 1995. Then, until 1997, the Irish Centre Cultural Society Co-Operative Ltd. occupied the building but eventually the historic site was closed completely and has remained so until the present day.
1999 - 2016
The Irish Community was in need of a new centre, and when St Michael's Parish Centre was offered in 1999 the public meeting attracted 140 people, an extraordinary amount considering there was no structure for contact in place. The new St Michael's Irish Centre quickly became home to many of the organisation that had called Mount Pleasant home. Old traditions continued such as the annual St Patrick’s Day Mass and Crib Sunday.
2016 - Present
In 2017 St Michael's Irish Centre was renamed as Liverpool Irish Centre and we entered a new chapter of our long history, In the 1960s we hosted primarily first and second generation Irish, since then our community has grown to include later generations born in Merseyside.
"if we fail to have an Irish Centre, and fail to keep our Irishness alive, then we sink without trace. That is NOT integration"
The Centre is ran by our committee, Maureen Morrison, and our managers, Megan Loughran and Richie Billing. We are also supported by a team of exceptional and dedicated volunteers who help make the Centre what it is today.