Sinn Féin have broken the mould in Tipperary by winning a record five seats in the Premier County.
Carrick-on-Suir Town Cllr David Dunne topped the poll in his area, receiving 1,398 first preference votes on the first count. For the 40-year-old from Cregg Lawns, who was co-opted into departing Cllr Liam Walsh’s seat this January, it was a great achievement.
Sinn Féin has now appointed a three-man team to consider their strategy. Cllr Dunne says improving childcare and playing field facilities for young people is his primary concern for this term of office, and pointed to the successful multi-purpose shared playing field in Clerihan between Clonmel and Cashel as an example of what can be achieved. “They have a shared facility, with a pitch and walking track. The club really inspires me every time I pass it.” Cllr Dunne said it wasn’t just anger on the doorstep and a protest vote which helped Sinn Féin, but hard work by the organisation on the ground over the last 10 years. “We consider this a seismic change, and even the Taoiseach said this is a seismic change.”
Councillor David Doran powered through to claim the fifth seat in the Thurles Templemore area having received 1,283 first preference votes and he received one of the loudest cheers of the day in the County Centre when the result was announced.
Meanwhile, Cllr Catherine Carey pulled off a greta contest to take the 7th seat in the 14th count in the Clonmel area having received 893 first preferences. And, in the Nenagh area Councillor Seamie Morris retained his seat with 1,731 first preferecnes seeing him over the line to claim the second seat.
Sinn Fein claimed 10% of the vote in Tipperary and go into the new all County Council on a very strong footing.