The Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council Councillor Michael Fleming has hosted a reception in County Hall to honour the members of ‘Teaspach’ and soloist Niamh Farrell for their recent outstanding achievements. ‘Teaspach’ were winners of the Siansa Gael Linn competition, while Niamh Farrell won first prize at the All Ireland Finals of the Senior GAA Scór in traditional solo singing in Irish.
The Cathaoirleach was joined at the reception by Mayor Councillor Rosaleen O’Grady, Members of Sligo County Council, Chairman of the Sligo County Board Cyril Feehily, Seamus McCormick, Ard Comhairle, Comhaltas, Martin Enright, Bord an Chontae, Comhaltas, Wynne Oliver, Principal Sligo Grammar School, Bernadine McGauran, Cathaoirleach Scór, and Catherine Gallagher, Runai, Scór.
In his address the Cathaoirleach said the achievement ‘is a tribute to the people we honour at this reception, but also reflects great credit on their families, teachers and the many people who supported them every step of this wonderful journey. The Siansa Gael Linn competition is one of the most prestigious and keenly fought such events in the country, and the eight members of Teaspach performed with great skill in composure to emerge victorious from very a very challenging field. In addition to a monetary prize, this success for Teaspach will result in a number of appearances at events and festivals throughout the country over the next 12 months, and this national exposure will be a great learning experience for this excellent group.’
The Cathaoirleach commended Niamh Farrell on winning the highest accolade in the Scór competition, the first time in 34 years that Sligo could boast a success at this level. ‘Niamh is no stranger to success. She has won many All Ireland titles in Fleadh Ceoil na Heireann for her singing and music, and recently won first place inIrelandin the ‘Flute Slow Airs Competition.’ It also speaks volumes for Niamh’s character that she is very generous with her time, both to entertain and passing on her gift to others.’
‘It is a rare and wonderful privilege to be able to convene talent of this scale in the Council Chamber. In honouring the very special people who have earned this success, we also commend the many people working tirelessly in the background – the family, friends, teachers and mentors, the modest and discreet volunteers who would move mountains for their cause, but would never seek acknowledgement or reward for doing so.’
The Cathaoirleach also paid tribute to the Gaelscoil. ‘There are very few children and youth involved in traditional music and signing in Sligo who do not pass through the Gaelscoil; the Gaelscoil, Comhaltas and St Mary’s have a common, core aim – the development of our unique cultural heritage, our traditional games, an teabag Gaeilge, traditional music, song and dance.’
Mayor Councillor O’Grady paid tribute to all the musicians honoured at the reception, and she had followed Niamh Farrell’s remarkable progress in particular through her association with St Mary’s ‘The nine people we honour this evening can take great pride in their achievement, they are a credit to their families, schools and communities.’
- The Cathaoirleach, Mayor, Elected members with special guests 'Teaspach' and Niamh Farrell at a reception in their honour in County Hall
- Cathaoirleach Councillor Fleming and Mayor Councillor O'Grady making a presentation to Niamh Farrell at a reception in County Hall
- Teaspach performing at the reception in their honour at County Hall