Local election

D-Day for candidates in the Ballinamore electoral area

Voting on Friday, May 24

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D-Day for candidates in the Ballinamore electoral area

There are 30 confirmed candidates running in the local election to fill the 18 seats on Leitrim County Council.

Voting takes place on Friday, May 24, between 7am and 10pm and polling stations will be busy as voting in the European elections will also take place as well as a referendum on a proposal to change the Constitution of Ireland in relation to divorce.

The race for a seat on Leitrim County Council promises to be a closely fought contest in the three electoral areas in the county which will each return six seats.

In this article we will focus on the Ballinamore electoral area which has 11 candidates running.

The candidates are:

Brendan Barry (SF)

Gerry Dolan (IND)

Caillian Ellis (FF)

Pat Gilhooley (SF)

Enda McGloin (FG)

Caroline Mulvey (SF)

Denis O'Brien (IND)

Oisin O'Dwyer (Renua)

Paddy O'Rourke (FF)

Ita Reynolds-Flynn (FG)

Sean Wynne (IND)

Sitting councillor John McCartin has stepped down but with the inclusion of former and first-time candidates it promises to be an intriguing contest particularly in the two main population bases of Ballinamore and Drumshanbo.

Ita Reynolds-Flynn, from the Reynolds political dynasty in Ballinamore, is a first time candidate for Fine Gael but is expected to do well. Others expected to return to the Council are Paddy O'Rourke (FF) from Carrigallen and Caillian Ellis (FF) from Fenagh.

The inclusion of former Leitrim IFA Chairman, Pat Gilhooley (Aughnasheelin) on the Sinn Féin ticket will put pressure on many of the candidate, not least his running mates Caroline Mulvey (Cloone) and Brendan Barry (Drumshanbo).

The wider Drumshanbo area is going to be a minefield. Along with Cllr Barry, there is Independent councillor Gerry Dolan and former councillor Enda McGloin (FG). Add into the mix another well known community activist, Sean Wynne (Independent), and it will be intriguing to see who comes out on top. Mr Wynne is also running in the Carrick-on-Shannon electoral area.

Yet another Drumshanbo candidate, Oisín O'Dwyer, is the first Renua Ireland candidate to contest a local election in Co Leitrim.

The remaining candidate in the field is Denis O'Brien (Independent) from Leitrim Village who, like Mr Wynne, is also running in the Carrick-on-Shannon electoral area.