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December 10, 2009

Samuel Beckett bridge opens

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The opening ceremony of Dublin’s newest bridge, named after Nobel laureate Samuel Beckett, took place today. The iconic structure stretches 120 metres across the capital’s River Liffey from Guild Street on the northside to Sir John Rogerson’s Quay on the southside. Designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the bridge takes the shape of the Irish harp with cable-stay “˜strings’. Actor Barry McGovern performed Beckett excerpts at the ribbon-cutting ceremony as the Waiting for Godot author’s niece Caroline Murphy, nephew Edward Beckett and hundreds of Dubliners looked on.

Ms Murphy said her uncle would have been amazed by the 40 million euro creation. “He was a very, very unassuming man and I think he would have been quite overcome. “I can see the tears in his eyes now “” he probably wouldn’t have turned up to the opening but I think he would be very, very overcome by emotion,” she said. “It’s wonderful that Seamus Heaney came and I’m quite amazed that there are so many people here.

“I thought there would have been only a sprinkling of people in the know but I think Dublin has taken this bridge to its heart.”The Samuel Beckett Bridge’s steel superstructure was built at a Rotterdam shipyard before making a week-long sea voyage to Ireland in May.