Friday last proved to be a sad one for North Tipperary County Council as the final meeting of the local authority was held,bringing the curtain down on 111 years of local government.
Members of the council, led by Mayor Ger Darcy, assembled in the chamber for the last time and were joined by former members, Oireachtas members, and former staff and management as tributes were paid, and good wishes extended to those standing and retiring.
Definitely not coming back are long serving Councillors Jim Casey and Denis Ryan, while Cllrs Pauline Coonan who is ill at the present time, and Cllrs. Jonathan Meaney and Billy Clancy are not seeking re-election. Mayor Darcy led tributes to them and thanked them for their public representation and efforts on behalf of the people.
Former councillors returning for the day included; Sean Creamer, Kathleen O’Meara, John Sheehy, Alan Kelly, Michael Smith, Larry Looby, Dan Smith, Tom Harrington, Liam Whyte, Willie Kennedy, Michael Hough, Tom Ryan, Joe Hennessy, Noel Coonan and John Egan. Visitng former staff members included Risteard O’Domhnaill, John McGinley, Terry O’Niaidh and Paddy Heffernan.
While the meeting was tinged with sadness and regret, it was also a celebration of the achievements of the council which are so many, as to be impossible to recount.
“This is a sad and emotional day and I suppose nobody likes change. But, I would encourage everyone to focus on the positives and what has been achieved in our time here on the council and also down through the years.
“We are handing over a council that is very sound and I think that is a great credit to everyone who has been associated with this organisation, both staff, management and public representatives,” Mayor Darcy said - the 55th Mayor of the county.
All councillors contributed to the tributes with warm wishes being extended to Cllr Coonan who was unable to attend on the day.