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09 Aug 2022

Longford County Council hosts civic reception for Farrell Clan

Longford County Council hosts civic reception for Farrell Clan

The hushing flow of the Camlin provided the soothing background noise as Longford welcomed Farrells from across the globe for a civic reception in the seat of the local authority last Monday. Basking in glorious sunshine the event coincided with the official opening of the Farrell Clan Rally 2022, which will run until Friday, 22 July.

The civic reception in Áras an Chontae celebrated the proud history and enduring connection between members of the Farrell Clan and their ancestral home of County Longford. Over 100 guests were welcomed by Longford County Council Cathaoirleach Cllr Turlough McGovern. Many came from across the globe, including Farrell Clan representative Richard Armitage, who travelled from Shawville, Quebec in Canada.

This year’s rally is the first since 2018. The day started with an exhibition of Farrell memorabilia and local crafts in Longford Library. A gathering also took place at The Remembrance Garden on Great Water Street before the civic reception in Longford County Council buildings.

In his first public reception as Cathaoirleach Cllr Turlough McGovern spoke of the great honour of welcoming members of the Farrell Clan: “The Clan have a long and proud history with County Longford. I thank them for their enthusiasm for their ancestral home and for the work they continue to do to promote Longford abroad.”

Farrell Clan representative, Richard Armitage, and Cathaoirleach McGovern exchanged flags as part of the ceremony. Addressing the gathering Clan member Robert Farrell welcomed the guests and the local elected representatives and enjoined them to join in the battle cry of the Farrell clan “Cú reubha” which translates as The Hound Unleashed.

“To the friends who have made long journeys to be here this evening, a special welcome to all of you. It is a great honour and privilege to address on behalf of our Clan chieftain,” Mr Farrell said, “I want to thank the Cathaoirleach Turlough McGovern and the outgoing Cathaoirleach, Peggy Nolan, for all the support they have given us.”

Longford County Council Chief Executive, Paddy Mahon, welcomed the guests to this “diverse and thriving” county saying: “It's a great occasion. It's great that we can all gather for the first time in a couple of years. Longford County Council is delighted to see the return of the Farrell Clan Rally, which the Council has helped to support since the first Rally which took place in 1993.

“The long history of the gathering and the Farrells in Longford is celebrated here today at this civic reception in their honour. We look forward to continuing to deepen the connections between the Council and the Farrell Clan and all our Diaspora into the future.”

The Council Chief Executive acknowledged the county's many strengths: “Longford in 2022 is a modern county. The recent census figures show us to be the fastest growing county in the country. That is something we are all aware of here, but it is no harm to have it formally documented. It's a county with a very rich heritage and a very rich history. ”

After the formalities concluded the guests enjoyed a performance of three talented young traditional musicians.

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