Edgeworthstown's long wait for library to end as government chiefs approve multi million euro development

Rural Affairs Minister announces €2.4m development

Liam Cosgrove

Reporter:

Liam Cosgrove

Email:

liam.cosgrove@longfordleader.ie

Michael Ring

Rural Affairs Minister Michael Ring addresses audience members at this afternoon's funding announcement in Edgeworthstown.

Talk of a possible general election this side of Christmas may be gathering momentum, but in Edgeworthstown this afternoon there was only one topic on people's minds-the promise of a new, multi million euro state of the art library. 

Minister for Rural Affairs Michael Ring announced the final €1.15m allocation for a project this afternoon in front of invited guests at Edgeworthstown's Community Centre.

ALSO READ: Edgeworthstown library to receive multi-million euro green light

It brings to €2.4m the total amount ring-fenced by the Mayo TD's department for a project that is expected to get underway early in the new year.

Mr Ring said the delivery of the seven figure sum represented a "good news story" for a town he believed was "starting to take off".

The long serving Dáil deputy also took time to heap praise on Longford County Council Chief Executive Paddy Mahon's role in the project.

In referencing the pair's time together on Mayo County Council, Mr Ring said: "The day that Paddy Mahon came to Longford you took a very good man out of Mayo.

"Not only can he manage Mayo and Longford but we are thinking of bringing him back to manage the county team."

There were light hearted comments likewise thrown in the direction of Mr Ring's ministerial colleague, OPW Minister Kevin 'Boxer' Moran when he told the Independent Alliance TD: "We will be coming back I hope in the next two years (to open the library).

"But, Boxer you won’t be opening this one, I am going to be opening the library."

Ballymahon Municipal District Cathaoirleach Cllr Paul Ross paid testimony to the role played by locals in bringing today's announcement.

"The site of this library is an extraordinary commitment by the people of Edgeworthstown to give this site free of charge for the constriction of a project that will change this town forever," he said.

Like Mr Ring before him, Cllr Ross also tried to poke fun at the onlooking OPW Minister as he told of how he had secured the unanimous backing at yesterday's Longford County Council meeting for a new garda station in Edgeworthstown.

"It would be remiss of me to mention it to the two ministers to bring it back to cabinet and I can assure you we will invite you both back when you announce the funding for that as well," he joked.

With his arms folded and offering up a wry grin from the top table, Mr Moran quipped in response: "I’d better get onto (Cllr) Gerry (Warnock) so."

County Council Chief Executive, Paddy Mahon was more deliberate in his address, however, as he told of how the announcement had finally brought the curtain down on one of Co Longford's most eagerly sought after public developments.

"It's great to finally say that what we see on the drawings behind us is now going to happen and what was once a vision is now going to become a reality," he said.