Fans flock to see Bruce Springsteen rock Belfast

nine-year-old Ceara along with her mum Christine and dad Eamonn Devlin.
It was nine-year-old Ceara's first time seeing The Boss [BBC]

It was a sunny day in Belfast and with the Boss back in town thousands of people made their way to Boucher Playing Fields.

Some 40,000 people heard rock legend Bruce Springsteen play classics like Born to Run and Hungry Heart.

Groups were dressed in American Flag cowboy hats and boots, excited to see the Boss back in Belfast.

Springsteen took to the stage at 19:30 BST to huge applause.

Social media videos showed The Boss gifting a guitar pick to a young fan while performing Hungry Heart.

The European leg of Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band World Tour kicked off in Cardiff on 5 May and Belfast is the second stop on the tour.

Springsteen has played on the island of Ireland about 30 times in his five-decade career.

In the crowd was nine-year-old Ceara along with her mum Christine and dad Eamonn Devlin.

“This is Ceara’s first time seeing the boss. We are so excited we love him,” Christine said.

Ceara said: “I am so excited to get to see Bruce Springsteen.

"It will be a brilliant night,” she added.

Nesbitt Springsteen
A famous face in NI actor James Nesbitt was among the 40,000 fans at the concert [BBC]
Fans make their way to Boucher Playing Fields to see the Boss
Fans make their way to Boucher Playing Fields to see the Boss [BBC]

Earlier, a County Antrim teenager told BBC News NI that singing and dancing on stage with Springsteen was an experience of a lifetime.

Grace Lynch, from Portglenone, was just eight years old when she was plucked from the crowd at the King's Hall in Belfast to feature centre stage with the Boss in 2013.

More than a decade on from that show, she said she was excited to go see the rock legend again, this time at Boucher Playing Fields.

At his 2013 gig, Springsteen invited Grace on stage to help him sing Waitin' On A Sunny Day.

He then lifted her and put her on his shoulders before handed her back to her father.

Grace said she could not believe what happened but it is a very special memory.

“I don’t remember being nervous and I didn’t even pay much attention to the crowd," she continued.

"I just remember worrying I would forget the lyrics.

"His lyrics touch so many people for so many reasons. Bruce ‘The Boss’ is such a legend."

This experience has proved to be a real ice breaker for Grace on many occasions.

She said it would be her father's dream to meet Springsteen on Thursday.

“It would be my dad’s ultimate dream to meet Bruce in person."

Grace added she was "looking forward to another ‘Sunny Day’ at Boucher tonight with all my family".

"Can’t wait to Twist and Shout with Bruce.”

After the Belfast gig, Springsteen will then make his way to the Republic of Ireland, with a date in Kilkenny at KK UPMC Nowlan Park on 12 May.

Next he heads to Cork where to play SuperValu Pairc Ui Chaoimh, on 16 May; before going to Dublin where he is playing Croke Park on 19 May.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) has advised there will be traffic disruption and a number of road closures in the Boucher area between midday and midnight on 9 May.