Taghmon's community spirit is put on display
IF THE SPIRIT of Taghmon could be bottled, it would solve all of Ireland's problems, President Mary McAleese said at the opening of Meitheal Munna, a new community centre for the parish. Three years ago, the site was a green field. Now it has a state-of-the-art childcare facility, Teach Spraoi, a purpose-build community centre, and a new education and training unit under construction. The campus is the work of Taghmon Action Group, which was formed in 2002 with the aim of investing voluntary effort into making life better for everyone in the community.
Last Wednesday, it was time to celebrate the achievement in the midst of a recession as the President came to town.
There were Irish flags and flowers galore, shiny tarmac and red carpet, a freshly-cut hay field for parking and a banner declaring ' Taghmon Welcomes the President of Ireland'. Even the potholes on the Stanville Hotel road were repaired to avoid any repetition of Obama's vehicular embarrassment.
The place was bursting at the seams with pride as it hosted the President, the Bishop, the County Manager, TDs and various other dignitaries. Bishop Denis Brennan, who served as a priest in the parish, looked as happy as a man who had arrived home.
In case anyone wondered where on earth Taghmon managed to get the money for this fantastic new complex, Martin Colfer, the chairman of Taghmon Action Group explained that Teach Spraoi was largely bank-rolled through the National Childcare Implementation Programme and the new community centre was two-thirds funded by Wexford County Council.
He thanked Fás, 'without whom we couldn't operate', and Wexford Local Development which was 'instrumental in us getting started.'
President McAleese was presented with an array of mementoes of her Taghmon visit including a replica of St Munn's Cross by Sheila Fortune and a Pikeman statue by Mick Walsh, the oldest resident in the parish.