21 March 2014 No Comments by The Northern Standard

St Patrick’s Day Parade in Monaghan Town appeared effectively dispelled at Tuesday evening’s meeting of Monaghan Town Council.

Concern had arisen locally that the abolition of the Town Council structure in May under new local government reforms would see the parade’s organisation lapse into abeyance – but councillors who play a role on the current Parade Committee pledged on Tuesday to continue with their work on a voluntary capacity, regardless of whether they are still involved in local politics.

Monaghan businesses, organisations and individuals willing to help arrange the 2015 parade were also invited to join the organisational structure at the meeting, which heard unstinting praise for the success of last Monday’s event in the county capital.

“Overall it was a fantastic day,” Cathaoirleach Paul McGeown commented, remarking on the number of visitors to the town Monday’s parade had generated.

The Cathaoirleach said he personally would not be an elected local authority member at the time of the 2015 parade, but he felt passionately that the event should continue in Monaghan Town.

“Do we keep the organising committee of us together even though some of may not be elected members?” he asked.

Urging the Council to ensure that some form of organisational structure was preserved, the Cathaoirleach remarked on the parade’s importance to young people in the town in particular, referring to the expression on children’s faces as they took part in Monday’s event and were “so chuffed to be walking in the parade around the town”.

Donal Sherry said it would be an awful pity if the event were allowed to slip into abeyance. Indicating his own willingness to volunteer to continue to help organise the parade, Colr Sherry remarked that he would like to see the core organisational group sticking together.

The Sinn Féin representative referred to the considerable boost to business in the town that the event brought.

Seamus Treanor, supporting the sentiments of the previous speakers, said it would be an injustice if the parade were allowed to lapse. “There was a great festival atmosphere in the town on Monday and the parade is something we cannot let discontinue,” he told the meeting.

Sean Conlon thanked the Town Council outdoor staff for their contribution to the 2014 parade’s organisation and Town Clerk Marie Deighan for her valuable administrative work. Stressing the importance of ensuring the continuity of the event, Colr Conlon recalled a period a decade or so ago when there was no such event in the town for a number of years.

He said the event was “all about community spirit” – it was an opportunity for the town’s wealth of community …

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