My weekend: Following in my father's footsteps at Cork Airport

David Crowley, who works at Cork Airport talks to us about his volunteer work, spending time with family and dreams of an escape to Budapest 
My weekend: Following in my father's footsteps at Cork Airport
David Crowley, Safety and Training Coordinator, Safety Department, Cork Airport. Pic: Brian Lougheed

David Crowley is the Safety & Training Coordinator at Cork Airport and a voluntary member of the Cork Airport Charity Committee. The Committee has announced its 2019 Charity of the Year, Marymount University Hospital and Hospice.


Tell us a little bit about yourself and your work:

I grew up in Grange, spending every summer by the sea in Fountainstown. This is where my love for the water came from. Growing up, I was actively involved in various groups and took a liking to all things based around the emergency services. Being involved with various groups, I found myself drawn to the medical side of things and joined the Irish Red Cross where I trained to become an Emergency Medical Technician.

Fast forward nearly 15 years — now settled in Carrigaline — married with a young family and I’m still involved with the voluntary emergency services. Splitting my time between the Crosshaven Unit of the Irish Coast Guard, Carrigaline Community First Responders and the Irish Red Cross.

Volunteering with the services provides great reward in the knowledge that you are helping people in what may be their toughest times.

Growing up, I spent a lot of time at Cork Airport where my father worked. I followed his footsteps, starting work at the Airport in 2002, and haven’t looked back since. Along with my work as the Safety & Training Coordinator, I am also a voluntary member of the Cork Airport Charity Committee. We have just announced our 2019 Charity of the Year, Marymount University Hospital and Hospice. It’s a great Cork charity, one which many would know about, and experienced first-hand the excellent support and care it provides to patients and their families.

What is your ideal way to spend a Friday night?

Friday nights can vary in our home. Some nights could be spent preparing for the weekend as I may have a training course or event that I would be covering. 

Mainly it is spent with the family relaxing and catching up on the week gone by, maybe over a glass of wine or beer in front of the stove.

David Crowley, Safety and Training Coordinator, Safety Department, Cork Airport. Pic: Brian Lougheed
David Crowley, Safety and Training Coordinator, Safety Department, Cork Airport. Pic: Brian Lougheed

Lie-ins or up with the lark.. which is it for you?

I used to be partial to a lie in, but with a two and a half-year-old now, those days are gone to a certain degree. However, on occasions, my wife Marie and I do take turns to have that elusive lie in.

Does work creep into your weekend at all?

Being on call with the Coast Guard means you can get the call any time of the day or night.

However, work at Cork Airport doesn’t creep into my weekend. Between my full-time role at the Airport and my voluntary role with the Cork Airport Charity Committee, it’s managed during office hours. The Charity of the Year always has some great events around it, which need to be planned, such as fundraisers like the annual 5km Runway Run at Cork Airport. Donation boxes are also located in the Airport’s terminal and The Loop throughout the year.

If money was no object where would you head to on a weekend city break? And who would you bring with you?

I’d love to go to either Monaco or Budapest with my wife for some R&R. I’d pick Monaco for the luxurious elegant city and harbour area and Budapest to see the two different vibes to the city split by the Danube. Definitely, Budapest is achievable, especially since a new twice-weekly flight from Cork to Budapest starts in April. A must visit, from what I hear, are the Széchenyi Thermal Baths.

Closer to home, is there some place you like to head to recharge the batteries?

To recharge the batteries, it has to be Killarney. My wife is from just outside Killarney and we get to spend a nice bit of time down there. 

The coastal walks around Crosshaven, Myrtleville and Fountainstown are really lovely spots and I’ve spent decades in and around these areas. Such different locations between Killarney and Cork Harbour, but each with their own scenic views.

Do you like to catch up with family/friends at the weekend?

Family catch-ups are a must but depend on where everyone is at the time. Regular catch-ups with friends at the weekend can range from lunch, dinner or a few drinks… it depends on what is on.

Do you get to indulge any hobbies? Even as a spectator?

I occasionally squeeze in a round or two of golf or go sailing for a few hours. However, spending time with the family is a must for any spare time.

Entertain or be entertained? If it's the latter do you have a signature dish?

I’ve been known to entertain on occasion. I actually love to cook and have no problems attempting new dishes. I wouldn’t say I have a signature dish but do revert to a good roast beef while entertaining to allow time to socialise.

We have so many places to eat out in Cork - where are yourgo-too spots for coffee/ lunch/ special meal?

A nice summer’s day lunch somewhere like River’s End in Crosshaven is a go to. For a special meal, it would have to be Bunnyconnellan in Myrtleville. Superb food with absolutely stunning views of the outer Harbour and Roches Point.

Sunday night comes around too fast.. how do you normally spend it?

Sunday nights are spent preparing for the week ahead. This just makes life easier during the week with work. It could be anything from prepping food for the week, to planning the wardrobe for our small fella. It’s always then followed by a bit of time chilling on the couch before the week ahead.

What time does your alarm clock go off on Monday morning?

Two alarms go off on a normal morning. First is normally 6am for my wife, as she needs to be on the road for CUH early to beat traffic and get parking. I have a second one set to allow me to have another 20-30 minutes in bed before it’s time to rise, get our small fella ready and out the door for the day.

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