Lawless makes history for Sinn Fein in Greystones
HISTORY was made late into the night on Sunday night when Sinn Féin's Nicola Lawless took the sixth and final seat in Greystones.
History was made late into the night on Sunday night when Sinn Féin's Nicola Lawless took the sixth and final seat in Greystones.
Lawless is the first Sinn Féin councillor to be elected in Greystones.
From the outset she set out her stall as one to watch with a very high first preference vote of 686. A newcomer to the Sinn Féin party she is surely a star in making for the party. She picked up transfers each time, sometimes minute numbers other times in larger quantity and she made steady inroads into the competition.
A few counts in she was apprehensive. 'I'm a bit nervous to be honest but going on the tallies I think I'll be fighting for the last seat. I've had a great response on the doors and I think people are looking for change. If you look at how Sinn Féin is doing I think people are searching for change.
'I've only been involved with the party since February. I'm a newbie! In the past I would have voted elsewhere but I decided it was time for a change and Sinn Fein was the right fix for me.
'I'm basically fourth generation Greystones and all my family live in the area. I had an idea of where I'd get my votes but I was surprised that it held up on the day because I was a newcomer.'
For Nicola, a mum of one, housing is a big issue for her. 'Housing would probably be my biggest thing. There is such homeless there. Not just people who can't get social housing but people who can't keep up their mortgage payments and are in arrears.'
Shortly after 11pm on Sunday night a jubilant Lawless was deemed elected after the 11th count. 'I'm relieved' she said. 'Coming near the end I knew we would do it but it was nail biting stuff all day. I had a good strong vote and it held firm throughout the day and I picked up transfers along the way too. She also said the support she had received from both her campaign team, her family, people on the doors and voters had been 'absolutely amazing'.
'The work starts now,' she said determinedly. But with daughter Sarah starting her Junior Certificate next Wednesday she might need to take a few days off!