ENNIS councillor Pat Daly has called on the Clare branch of Comhaltas to mount a major campaign in bringing Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann to Ennis in 2016.
Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann is the biggest traditional Irish music festival on the planet, a week-long jamboree of music, song and dance.
And the Fianna Fail councillor has asked his colleagues on the council to back the bid that would bring thousands of visitors and millions of euro to the town in two years time.
“We just missed out by two votes on securing the Fleadh in 2014 and Sligo is hosting it again next year, but Ennis is the ideal centre for the Fleadh, as we emerge slowly from recession,” Cllr Daly told the Ennis Municipal district meeting.
Cllr Daly outlined the work carried out by Sligo whose county councillors were to the fore in lobbying for the Fleadh at the Comhaltas Congress and pursued their interest by lobbying people all over the country.
“I’m now calling on the elected members of Clare County Council and on all elected members to ensure that we get the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in 2016.
“Clare is the home of Irish music and 2016 is the year we should get it. We would celebrate the centenary of the Easter Rising through the Fleadh. We must start now and go all out for it,” he said.
Cllr Mary Howard said it is very important that in Clare “we put our hat into the ring and do what it takes to get Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann. In Ennis in 2016.
“The Fleadh will be a nine-day-long jamboree with huge crowds and we have great venues. As a councilor, I will do whatever I can to support it. We have a lot in Ennis to offer the Fleadh as a venue.
Cllr Tom McNamara supported the call and said they should do everything they could to make sure Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann ends up in Ennis in 2016.
“It’s events like this that we need to develop the town and to develop jobs for the residents. Securing the Fleadh would be unbelievable and help us to continue to develop Ennis.”
Cllr Clare Colleran Molloy pointed out that Clare is acknowledged at home and abroad as the capital of traditional music in Ireland. “We definitely should do everything we can to secure the Fleadh for 2016,” said the Quin councillor.
Cllr James Breen supported the call and said it would be very important to secure the first Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann for Ennis since 1977, and Town manager Ger Dollard said the local authority would be 100% behind the campaign to bring the Fleadh to Ennis.