Ten community non-political candidates will be on the ballot paper on Saturday 25th May when the people of Clonakilty go to Scoil na mBuachaillí to vote in the Clonakilty Mayoral Election. Polling will be open from 9am to 7pm.
Everyone who is entitled to vote at that polling station on the previous day in the County Council and Euro elections and referendum can return there on Saturday to vote in the Mayoral election.This unique election will see five of the candidates directly elected as community, voluntary, non-political, honorary “Mayors of Clonakilty” for one year each over the coming five years.
Clonakilty is the only place in the whole of Ireland where this is happening and it was initiated in 2014 when the abolition of the 400 years old town council also saw the demise of the statutory town mayor position! Local community organisation Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage organised the inaugural Clonakilty mayoral election and almost 1,600 locals went out and voted in five of the eight candidates that stood.
The process is being repeated again on Saturday week 25th May, and on this occasion, ten candidates have been nominated for the five seats. Clonakilty is the only town in Ireland to have directly-elected mayors.
The ten candidates, as they will be listed on the ballot paper on 25th May are:-
Eddie Hawkins; Chris Hinchy; Paddy McCarthy; Anthony McDermott; John O’ Carroll; Michael O’ Neill; Pádraig O’ Reilly; Annie Tanner; Richy Virhasawmy and James White.
Meanwhile, the Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage Mayoral Sub Committee which is organising and overseeing the election, is appealing for election volunteers to man the polling station on Saturday 25th. Interested people are asked to contact 086-0833323 asap.
PHOTO: The five outgoing members of the Clonakilty Mayoral Council, who have served as voluntary community Mayors for one year each since their election in 2014. Front: Current Mayor Gretta O’ Donovan and Deputy Mayor Colette Twomey. Back: John Loughnan, Anthony McDermott and Cionnaith Ó Súilleabháin. Anthony McDermott is the only one going forward contesting next Saturdays (25th May) election. (Photo: Dermot Sullivan).
Second Clonakilty Historical Journal launched
PHOTO: Seen at the launch of the Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage “Clonakilty Historical and Archaeological Journal Volume 2" at the Parish Centre before Christmas were:
Back: Tim Feen, (Cathaoirleach Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage); Tony McCarthy, (contributor); Mayor John Loughnan; Tomás Tuipéar, Michael O’ Mahony and Dr. Bernadette McCarthy, (all contributors).
Front: Sam Kingston, Diarmuid Kingston and Áine Ní Chonnaill (all contributors); Michael Galvin, (who launched the journal); Clíodhna O’ Leary, (Editor) and Marian O’ Leary, (contributor). (Photo: Anthony Brennan).
Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage “Clonakilty Historical and Archaeological Journal Volume 2" was launched at the Clonakilty Parish Centre before Christmas and sales are going well in local bookshops and other outlets.
With over 300 pages and 15 articles on diverse local historical and archaeological topics – including two by authors in the United States, this journal is a must for all locals and a great companion to Volume 1 published two years ago.
Kilmurry local historian and author Michael Galvin launched the journal on the night.
Tim Feen, Cathaoirleach Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage welcomed the crowd of around 60 people in attendance, complimenting the journals editor Clíodhna O’ Leary and her editorial board who’ve been working on the project since the publication of the inaugural journal of 2015. It is a very busy and efficient sub-committee of Dúchas.
Mayor John Loughnan, (founding chair of Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage), paid tribute to all involved in bringing the book to publication before Christmas, and referred to many of the articles contained in it. He encouraged everyone to purchase and promote it.
Clíodhna Ó Leary, editor thanked all her fellow authors who have contributed excellently written and well-researched articles as well as the editorial board and the outlets that are selling the journal.
Michael O’ Mahony, on behalf of the Editorial Board (and an author himself), outlined the process from writing an article to it’s eventual appearance in the journal, referencing, etc.
Special guest Michael Galvin officially launched the publication referring in detail to many of the 15 articles contained in the journal. He praised the quality of the writing and the excellent research – backed up by referencing, in all of them. It was quite clear that all contributors have a real passion for history and research and in many cases their articles were the culmination of years of research and investigation. He commended the journal to all who are interested in history both local and with a local slant.
The formalities concluded with Tim Feen thanking everyone and encouraging people to purchase the book, which at €10 in most local bookshops, newsagents, etc. is great value.
The following local outlets currently has it in stock- Coughlan’s Bookshop; Kerr's Bookshop; Clonakilty Bookshop; Meade’s Newsagent; Scally's Supervalu; The Golden Pheasant, Courtmacsherry and Barryroe Co-Op. It will be available in bookshops in the wider West Cork area over the coming couple of weeks.
Dúchas Members Trip to the Beara Peninsula
Twenty-five members of Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage had a very interesting weekend trip to the Beara Peninsula on Sept 30/Oct 1 2017. The trip started with a visit to Thornhill Cilleenach, a large children’s graveyard, unusual in that it had one inscribed grave marker. Moving closer to Castletownbere, we visited the humble cottage in which William Martin Murphy was born, the politician and businessman who is now infamously remembered for the 1913 Lockout of the Dublin trade unionists, led by James Larkin. While having lunch in MacCarthy’s bar we gained an insight into the incredible story of Dr Aidan MacCarthy and the Japanese sword. Dunboy Castle, the seat of Donal Cam O’Sullivan Bere, and Puxley Mansion followed, then on to Dzogchen Beara, Dursey Sound and Allihies Mountain Mine.
On Sunday morning, a guided town walk of Castletownbere was followed by a visit to Dereenattagart stone circle, then on to the ruins of the old rectory where Canon James Goodman compiled his vast musical collection while a curate in the 1860s, a visit to the imposing Ballycrovane Ogham stone, the tallest known Ogham stone, Kilcatherine Church with its medieval cross and curious stone head, and not forgetting the Hag of Beara on our travels before stopping at the peaceful Kilmackillogue Harbour for a welcome meal in Harringtons. Our journey home was through the beautiful Healy Pass, with views down over Glenlough Lake as the sun was setting.
Our thanks to Fachtna O’Donovan, of Castletownbere, our guide for the weekend, who gave us a truly wonderful history of this beautiful and historic peninsula and to William Casey for his informative and sensitive talk on the cilleen. Also thanks to Rachael Cronin for organising a superb weekend and to our intrepid bus driver, Teddy Lowney, for braving the many narrow and windy roads of the remoter parts of the peninsula.
View photographs of the day courtesy of Anthony Brennan & William Casey GALLERY
List of winners of the Heritage Week Treasure Hunt:
Cian O'Sullivan, Ovens
Daire Murray, Waterford
Stella McKane, Carmarthen, Wales
Rohan Neat, Cambridge, UK
Yasemin Yikilmaz, Ballincollig
Michael Collins, Woodfield
Caolan O'Driscoll, Dunmanway
Nuria Gomez Cardoso, Midleton
Annie McCarthy, Clonakilty
Niamh O'Gorman, Kinsale
Louis Barrett-Slater, UK
With thanks to all our sponsors:
Geraldine Cullinane, Clonakilty Bookshop
Trish Kerr, Kerr's Bookshop
Laurence Coughlan, Coughlan's Bookshop
West Cork Model Railway Village
Michael Collins House
Good positive feedback from many participators, with both children and accompanying adults enjoying the opportunity to discover the history of Clonakilty.