Annacotty, County Limerick, IRELAND, 7th Sept 07 - Mr Willie O’Dea, T.D., Minister for Defence and Cllr. Kevin Sheahan, Cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council will officially open the new Limerick County Civil Defence Headquarters in Annacotty Business Park on Friday 14th September next.
The state-of-the-art facility, which will be utilised by almost 100 Civil Defence volunteers from around the county, includes a training room, office accommodation, stores, ablutions and garage.
Commenting ahead of the official opening, Mayor Sheahan stated that Limerick County Civil Defence has had an outstanding record of service over many years.
He continued, “Many people do not realise that Limerick County Civil Defence is a volunteer-based organisation and that all members give freely of their time to acquire skills that will be vital to the local community in times of need. Acquiring these skills involves many hours of training, which is why it is essential that modern and extensive Headquarter facilities be established.”
“I have every confidence that this new facility will make an excellent organisation even better by allowing the Civil Defence volunteers to undergo multiskilled training. I wish the Civil Defence Officer and all volunteer members of Limerick County Civil Defence continued success in the future and would like to pay special tribute to the wonderful volunteer ethos that exists within the local Civil Defence organisation”, added the Cathaoirleach.
According to Mr. Jos Kirby, Civil Defence Officer, Limerick County Council, “The new facility will allow us to host regular and centralised training activities and events for the increasing number of Civil Defence volunteers. Civil Defence classes have in the past been conducted in numerous centres throughout the county, including Glin, Newcastle West, Rathkeale, Kilmallock Doon, Pallas Green and of course here in Annacotty the ‘Spiritual home’ of Civil Defence in the County. Classes over the coming months will be centred in Foynes, Kilmallock and Annacotty.”
“The volunteers are delighted with the new facility and the support they have received from Limerick County Council and The Civil Defence Board”, he added.
Mr. Kirby explained that the role of Limerick County Civil Defence has changed over the years.
“Limerick County Civil Defence has been strong since the early 1950s when training was conducted in the warden, welfare, casualty and rescue services at various centres throughout the county. Instructors were trained at the National Civil Defence School who in turn recruited and trained new members locally”, he stated.
Mr. Kirby added, “In recent years the emphasis has moved to community support and Limerick County Civil Defence Members are well and truly embedded in the local community delivering training in First Aid, Rescue, Fire Drills, Welfare, Communications, Kayaking, Abseiling and completing courses in Power Boating, Driving, GPS Navigation. A number of members have also completed Advanced Rescue training in Wales.”
Limerick County Civil Defence continues to support various local, national and international activities and operations, including land and water searches for missing persons, the Lough Gur Summer Festival, the Cappamore Show, Chernobyl Children’s Project, annual Limerick Diocesan Pilgrimage, Irish Open in Adare, Clonshire Riding Events, an International Student Badminton Tournament, the Milford Harvest Fair, the victory reception following Munster’s Heineken Cup win and the JP McManus Pro Am Golf tournament.
There is also a competitive element to Civil Defence and this year County Limerick performed to the highest standard in both the Regional Rescue Competition at Glengarriff, and National competitions in Arklow and Clane.
In recent times, Limerick County Civil Defence participated in a simulated air crash exercise at Shannon Airport and in an anti-pollution exercises in Foynes where members got the opportunity to work as part of a team with other agencies.
Meanwhile, Limerick County Civil Defence has announced that it is currently recruiting new members.
Lifesaving First Aid Classes will be held in Annacotty (every Tuesday 8-10pm), Kilmallock and Foynes (every Wed 8-10pm) on the week commencing 1st Oct 2007.
For further information contact Jos Kirby at 061-496431 or email@example.com.
Notes to Editor:
- Cllr. Kevin Sheahan, Cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council (087-2926333) and Jos Kirby, Civil Defence Officer, Limerick County Council (086-6095344) are available for interview and further comment ahead of the official opening.
- Please note that the media is invited to attend the official opening of the new Limerick County Civil Defence Headquarters in Annacotty Business Park on Friday 14th at 11am. For further information please contact Mark Dunphy of Dunphy Public Relations on 086-8534900 or firstname.lastname@example.org.