Shane MacGowan funeral: Pogues singer’s send off expected to attract thousands in Nenagh, Tipperary

The Pogue’s Shane MacGowan’s last performance before death aged 65

Thousands of mourners including Irish leaders and the country’s biggest celebrities are expected to gather to pay their respects to Shane MacGowan the iconic singer of The Pogues on Friday.

The irrepressible frontman, known for songs including “Fairytale of New York” and “Pair of Brown Eyes”, died last week aged 65. Songs by the band are already playing on loop in the town of Nenagh, where a public mass will be held on Friday at 3.30pm ahead of a private cremation.

It comes after his widow Victoria Mary Clarke said the cause of Shane’s death was pneumonia. MacGowan had suffered from a number of health issues over the years, and had recently been discharged from hospital in Dublin, where he was being treated for encephalitis.

She posted: “Shane hated funerals and he refused to go to them with a few rare exceptions.

“So it’s incredible to think that so many people want to come to his and that so many beautiful people are pouring their hearts and souls into making it magnificent and magical and memorable for him and for us who are left behind.”


Where will the funeral procession go?

Shane MacGowan’s funeral will take place in Nenagh, Tipperary later today.

Members of the public are expected to line the streets to catch a glimpse of the procession, which will begin at St Lotts Road in Dublin City Centre at 11am.

The procession, reported to involve a horse-drawn carriage as well as the Artane Band and a piper, will then travel through the city across MacMahon Bridge and onto Pearse Street.

It will turn onto Westland Row, onto Fenian Street and conclude at Denzille Lane at approximately 11.45am.

MacGowan’s public funeral mass, which will be live-streamed, will take place at St Mary’s of the Rosary Church in Nenagh at 3.30pm.

Irish President Michael D Higgins is expected to attend alongside stars such as Jonny Depp and Nick Cave.

Following the funeral mass, the public will also have the opportunity to pay their respects as the funeral cortege moves through Nenagh town centre from Church Road to Market Cross.

Nicole Vassell8 December 2023 09:30


Shane MacGowan’s widow shares some words ahead of funeral

On Thursday, Victoria Mary Clarke, widow of MacGowan, shared some words ahead of his funeral – and noted that the Pogues star was no fan of memorials, himself.

“Shane hated funerals and he refused to go to them with a few rare exceptions,” she wrote. “So it’s incredible to think that so many people want to come to his and that so many beautiful people are pouring their hearts and souls into making it magnificent and magical and memorable for him and for us who are left behind.”

Clarke concluded her Instagram post by saying she understood anyone who didn’t want to attend her late husband’s service, as well as her hope that people remember MacGowan for his kind treatment of others.

She wrote: “If you want to remember him, the next time you see a homeless person stop and give them your time and your compassion and your respect and treat them like a brother or a sister.”

Nicole Vassell8 December 2023 09:00


MacGowan’s widow ‘spent 35 years worrying about his death’

Shane MacGowan’s widow, Victoria Mary Clarke, said she worried about his death for 35 years because he “pushed the boundaries of what humans can do to their bodies”.

The Pogues frontman, best known for classic Christmas hit song Fairytale Of New York, died last week at the age of 65.

The gritty song is now battling to score the coveted Christmas number one spot, a feat not achieved when it was originally released in 1987, having peaked at number two in the charts.

Clarke told ITV’s Good Morning Britain on Thursday: “I don’t think Shane would mind too much if Fairytale goes to number one.

“I don’t think it was ever that important to him, because I think that he really appreciated the fact that so many people love it and it means so much to so many people, and being number one isn’t really all about being appreciated.”

Shane MacGowan in hospital with his wife, Victoria Mary Clarke

(Twitter/ Victoria Mary Clarke)

Sam Rkaina8 December 2023 06:30


The Darkness perform tribute to Shane MacGowan in Dublin

The Darkness launched into a spine-tingling rendition of Fairy Tale of New York getting the Dublin crowd to sing along on the night before his funeral.

The rockers captioned the video shot at the Olympia Theatre: “Thanks for the sing-a-long Dublin. R.I.P. Shane MacGowan”

Barney Davis8 December 2023 05:45


Local band honoured to perform at Shane MacGowan’s funeral in Nenagh

Popular local outfit Cronin were chosen to play Shane MacGowan’s funeral alongside international megastar Nick Cave.

The Longford band have a long relationship with the late Pogues frontman, having joined forces on RTE’s Late Late Show.

Singer Mick Cronin said the memories of recording with Shane and playing at festivals will always stay with them.

“We have lost a dear friend, an idol, a collaborator, a band member, a Fenian, a genius and a proud Irishman,” he said.

Former Pogues frontman Shane MacGowan (PA)

(PA Wire)

Barney Davis8 December 2023 03:45


Fairytale in New York could be set for Irish Number One

The Pogues biggest hit could top the charts in Ireland after a fierce campaign launched when it was realised Fairytale was being beaten to No 1 in the UK by Wham and Mariah Carey.

Shane’s widow Victoria Mary Clarke had shared the Irish Sun front page on her Instagram Stories helping a late push that put the Christmas classic 700 units ahead of Noah Kahan in the Irish charts.

An Irish chart insider told The Irish Sun: “Pogues fans have embraced downloading.

“It’s a Fairytale comeback that would put a smile on Shane’s face.”

Fairytale of New York reaching Christmas No.1 ‘not important’ to Shane MacGowan

(Good Morning Britain/ITV)

Barney Davis8 December 2023 02:30


Bono set to miss MacGowan’s funeral due to Las Vegas show

After much speculation the Irish Sun is reporting that U2 megastar Bono will be unable to attend Shane MacGowan’s final farewell in Tipperary, as U2 are due to perform a sold-out Las Vegas show that same night.

A source said: “U2 are due to play Las Vegas on Friday night and it’s sold-out, there is no way the lads could make it back for Shane’s funeral unfortunately.

“They are very saddened by this. Shane was a great friend of the lads, Bono and The Edge were among the few allowed in to see him. They’ll honour him in their own way.”

Nick Cave and Johnny Depp are expected to be at the Public Mass in Nenagh.

(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

Barney Davis8 December 2023 01:45


Plans for Shane MacGowan’s funeral procession through Dublin and on to Nenagh

The Pogues singer’s coffin is scheduled to arrive by hearse at Ringsend at 10.30am on Friday and once there it will be transferred to a horse-drawn carriage.

At 11am, the carriage is due to be led by the Artane Band and a lone piper along South Lotts Road, over McMahon Bridge and Grand Canal Dock, and along Pearse Street.

It will be followed by the chief mourners, led by the singer’s widow Victoria Mary Clarke, in a procession.

The hearse and family cars will then leave Dublin for Nenagh, Co Tipperary.

The funeral Mass is to be held at 3.30pm in St Mary of the Rosary Church, Nenagh, close to the homeplace of MacGowan’s mother, Therese.

With a high turnout expected, the funeral mass is to be broadcast live via the official Shane MacGowan Facebook page and across pubs in the area.

Victoria Mary Clarke said it’s hard to believe her late husband Shane MacGowan’s funeral is this week

(Victoria Mary Clarke/Instagram)

Barney Davis7 December 2023 23:51


Nick Cave pens poignant tribute to ‘greatest songwriter of his generation’

Nick Cave, who has been confirmed as playing a song at the Public Mass for Shane MacGowan on Friday, penned a poignant tribute to the “beautiful and damaged” singer.

He wrote: “Shane’s wife, Victoria, then pushed Shane on in a wheelchair and, well, I know I should be talking about the pure unbridled genius of Shane MacGowan and how he was the greatest songwriter of his generation, with the most terrifyingly beautiful of voices — all of which is true — but what struck me at that moment was the extraordinary display of love for this man, so powerful and deep, that poured forth from the audience.

“Shane was not revered just for his manifold talents but also loved for himself alone. A beautiful and damaged man, who embodied a kind of purity and innocence and generosity and spiritual intelligence unlike any other.

“Sinéad once said of Shane, ‘He is an angel. An actual angel’. Whether or not this is the case, who’s to say? But Shane was blessed with an uncommon spirit of goodness and a deep sense of what is true, which was strangely amplified in his brokenness, his humanness. We can say of him most certainly, ‘he was beloved on the earth,’ and Sinéad too — truly beloved and greatly missed, both.”

Barney Davis7 December 2023 20:30


Councillor organising Nenagh’s tribute to Shane MacGowan saying he is struggling to get his own wife a ticket to church mass

Independent Cllr Séamie Morris who has been busy organising road closures and The Pogues music pumping through the Nenagh town centre gave the Independent a tour of Shane MacGowan’s favourite pub Philly Ryan’s.

He told The Independent: “The town has been mucking in together. The council workers have been working so hard to make the town look sparkling.

“To get into the church will be nigh on impossible I’m struggling to get my own wife a seat. The Mass will hopefully be streamed in all the pubs nearby which would be a lovely atmosphere.”

He added there will be plans to honour the singer with a mural or statue in town to recognise his incredible legacy.

“Even Bruce Springsteen says he is a genius some say Johnny Depp has been in town for the last couple of days. He will always be remembered here and his name will live on.

“As a musician and a wordsmith. It is a huge loss to the entire world. I’ve heard his music play in bars across Kathmandu.

“He had the Irish immigrant experience coming from England. If he lived here his whole life he could have ended up working on a building site. He needed that journey to make him who he is.”

(Barney Davis)

Barney Davis7 December 2023 19:30


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