The proceeds of a posthumous book of poetry by the late Denis Collins have been presented to two very worthy local charities.
On Thursday, artist Kevin Lewis and filmmaker, Philip Cullen, took great delight in handing over €3,400 to Wexford Tidy Towns and the Wexford branch of Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland (SBHI).
The money was divided equally between the two organisations which were very close to Mr Collins' heart.
The money was raised from sales of a book titled 'Gone For Coffee' which is a collection of poems composed by the late Mr Collins and released by Mr Lewis and Mr Cullen following the passing of their close friend.
The high regard in which Mr Collins was held by everyone who knew him was underlined at the launch of the book last October when hundreds of people gathered in the Wexford County Council buildings for the event.
Speaking to this newspaper Mr Cullen said the reaction to the book has been overwhelming.
'The reaction to the book was, and still is, incredible,' he said.
Such was the interest in the collection that the first run almost sold out at the launch night.
That prompted a second run to be published and Mr Cullen said that is now almost sold out too, with just 10 copies left.
Mr Lewis also expressed delight at how well the book was received.
One of Wexford's most respected artists it's his illustrations that accompany 24 of the poems in the book.
Those illustrations were chosen by Mr Collins and following his passing both Mr Lewis and Mr Cullen felt the book should only include the illustrations that their friend had direct input in choosing.
Mr Lewis' illustrations feature Wexford locations and are beautifully presented in the book and Mr Collin's works all have a relative local theme.
'We would like to thank friends and colleagues of Denis who contributed and gave moral and emotional support along the wonderful journey of this fantastic book,' said Mr Cullen.
'Thanks to Cllr Lisa McDonald for championing this book from the start,' he added.
Other people were also acknowledged for their support of the project and recognising the importance of the book for the family and friends of Mr Collins, and also for Wexford in general.
They include Wexford District Manager, Angela Laffan, Wexford Borough Council, Arts Officer, Liz Burns, Wexford County Council and retired Director of Services, John Carley.
Both Mr Lewis and Mr Cullen also complimented Aidan Rea, from the Red Kettle Cafe, for his support: 'We would also like to thank Aidan Rea of The Red Kettle Cafe who's support is very much appreciated.'
They also acknowledged Mr Collins' family: 'A special thank you to the Collins family for allowing us the freedom to present 'Gone For Coffee' in a way we know Denis would be proud of.'
The remaining 10 copies of 'Gone For Coffee' can be purchased at The Red Kettle Cafe in Wexford town.