independent

Sunday 22 April 2018

An unbelievable event

Seán Walsh and Saoirse, James Jnr and James Stafford from Clonmines
Seán Walsh and Saoirse, James Jnr and James Stafford from Clonmines
Ian Power from Fethard adjusting some lights
Tony Fitzharris from Coole

David Looby

'Unbelievable!' This was how Campile festive charity tractor run organiser John Hearn described the event which lit up south west Wexford on a beautiful winter's evening in mid-December, raising around €3,000 in the process for Wexford Hospice Homecare.

This was the first year the event was held and with 87 tractors decorated from the wheels to the cab in bright lights, it was one to remember.

Crowds saw the fantastic tractorcade off, cheering as it departed for Dunmain, where over 100 people had gathered outside Rosie's pub, and on to Ballycullane, Saltmills, Fethard-on-Sea, Ramsgrange and Duncannon, receiving rapturous responses everywhere it went, before finishing in Arthurstown.

John got the idea from a similar charity festive rioad run which was held in Clonmel last year and from the Whitechurch road run through New Ross earlier in December.

'I thought we could do something to raise money in an enjoyable way,' the Campile family man said.

He decided to raise money for Wexford Hospice Homecare as his mother-in-law and sister-in-law benefited greatly from its services. 'Each and every family has been affected by cancer. I thought it was a simple thing to do. I got in touch with Ann Somers in New Ross who is involved in the Hospice.'

A cheque for around €3,000 is being presented to Ms Somers this week at the King's Bay Inn in Arthurstown, where the drivers and their passengers were all treated to complimentary bowls of Irish stew for their efforts by its owner Mary Sutton.

John thanked Mary. 'She's unbelievable. When I mentioned my idea bout the festive road run to her in the summer she immediately came on board. It would put a tear in your eye to see the crowds in all the villages. The children loved it. We were lucky as it was a bright day and it wasn't too cold.'

John thanked the drivers who drove from Taghmon and the Hook and across the district to volunteer their time, having already spent time wonderfully decorating their vehicles for the road run.

'I sent out 75 text messages to people involved in vintage road runs and everyone came on board. It was all worthwhile as people said they enver saw anything like it. It was a privilege to be part of.'

The next Campile festive road run will be held on Sunday, December 16, 2018, continuing what is a fantastic, new Christmas tradition in the south west Wexford area.

New Ross Standard

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