Lord Mayor's Diary: Cork had a week of highs and lows

Lord Mayor's Diary: Cork had a week of highs and lows

Bishop Buckley and Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Tony Fitzgerald at the funeral of actor Michael Twomey of ‘Cha and Miah’ fame at St Michael’s Church, Blackrock, Cork. Picture Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

Cork had a week of highs and lows

IT’S been a very emotional week with good and bad news across our city, country and indeed the world.

In the sporting arena Cork City FC advanced to the next round of the FAI Cup, our Minor Hurlers reached the All Ireland Final as did our Camogie Team and another win for our Ladies football team.

Our young basketball heroes and ladies rugby team wore the Irish jersey with pride and the great Rob Heffernan announced his retirement after a fabulous performance in London. Unfortunately, we did not reach the All Ireland Hurling and Football finals but we are so proud of both sets of players, coaches and officials at Cork County Board for giving us a great summer and commitment to the Cork jersey. I’ve no doubt they will return stronger in the future.

The week also marked the commemoration of the centenary of the birth of Jack Lynch. It was an honour to lay a wreath at his graveside. As many people said to me, he was one of our own. It’s fitting that we remember Jack Lynch at this time. In doing so remember also his wife Mairin (O’Connor) whom he met while on holiday in Glengarriff in 1943 and married in 1946 – his lifelong friend. She more than anyone else knew and loved ‘The Mon boy’, The ‘Glen Rovers Man’, ‘The Real Taoiseach’, ‘The Man of Peace’ ‘One of our Own’. I wonder what ‘iconic’ description she would offer?

Sadly, Cork lost another famous son, actor Michael Twomey, known to us as Miah in the Cha & Miah comedy partnership. My condolences to his wife Máire and family and I want to thank them for sharing Michael with us for many years on RTÉ, City Hall, The Opera House and Everyman theatre.

Last weekend brought an end the fabulous production of Annie at the Opera House. This was a great show and Michael would have been so proud of the performance that ensures Cork arts and theatre is truly alive.

Kyle and Adam Barry, Ballygarvan enjoying Cork Heritage Open Day, organised by Cork City Council, at Elizabeth Fort. Picture Darragh Kane
Kyle and Adam Barry, Ballygarvan enjoying Cork Heritage Open Day, organised by Cork City Council, at Elizabeth Fort. Picture Darragh Kane

There are lots of activities across the city to celebrate during Heritage Week and no better place to do it but at the Coal Quay.

I was delighted to open their Sixth Annual Festival and what a great atmosphere in this historical part of the city with all the traders, shawlies and entertainers.

Much consideration was given to the recent report on the city boundary Implementation Group and correspondence from the County Council regarding the boundary extension.

Myself and officials from City Hall worked hard over the August Bank holiday and while I was away I requested a detailed analysis in preparation for a special meeting of council on August 14, which I would like to thank fellow members of Council for attending. I want to thank our chief executive for preparing a detailed overview of the status of the implementation group and the need for Cork to develop as a region. Our focus will be the deliberations within the MacKinnon report.

I was delighted to visit Bishop John Buckley at his office and attend the Lee Shrine Annual Mass on the Lee Road where there was a great crowd. It’s always a pleasure to be in the company of Bishop John and he has the people of his Diocese close to his heart.

Receiving groups in City Hall is always special. This week the Cork City and County Harrier Association visited me to announce the final of their Senior All-Ireland drag hunt in Castletownroche on the 24th September 2017.

At my request, a book of condolences is open at City Hall for all members of the public to pay their sympathies to the people of Spain. Many Cork people have walked the famous Las Ramblas and holidayed in Cambrils near Salou. We here in Cork stand in solidarity with the people of Spain and our thoughts and prayers are with the bereaved and I hope all those who are injured have a full recovery.

Thanks to Dermot Collins and all the Béal na mBláth Commemoration Committee for the warm welcome at the 95th Commemoration to Michael Collins at Béal na mBláth.

As you read my weekly column Aishling O’Connor will have appeared on our screens for the Rose of Tralee. I wish her every success and will be there to support her.

Finally, the great Billa O’Connell said to me walking behind the remains of the Late Michael Twomey RIP: “Lord Mayor, He was one of our own.” He certainly was and so was Jack. “One of our own.”

May they Rest in Peace.

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