Cllr Gleeson makes light of his generous gesture
Published 08/01/2014 | 05:36
Castleisland's string of sparkling Christmas lights - which adorn the trees on the main street - have been admired by many locals and visitors since they were first switched on by then MEP, Gerry Collins, in 1997.
The lights were secured and fitted then under the steam of a Leader grant.
They have been maintained down through the years by the local tidy towns committee through its often meagre budget and the kindness of the ESB bill paying business community.
This year, feeling that the lights were well due for a revamp, the committee thought of the tried and trusted route of a church gate collection.
Trying to secure a date in the coveted and packed calendar, though, proved a sticking point until Cllr Michael Gleeson learned of the committee's plight.
Cllr Gleeson, in an unsolicited gesture, stood down his collection dates locally and handed the opportunity to the appreciative committee.
The collection was taken up on the weekend of October 26-27 and the donations gathered and the refurbishment of the lighting went ahead in time for the pre-season switch on. As a token of their gratitude the committee members asked Cllr Gleeson to visit Castleisland before Christmas to inspect just how his gift to the town had actually panned out.
Unfortunately the weather played a spoil-sport on the evening of his visit and photographs had to be grabbed between gusts of high wind and driving rain.
Cllr Gleeson got the point however and the committee urged me to include their words of sincere thanks to him and to those who contributed to the collection here this week.