History was made in recent weeks when the Sinn Fein Mayor of Athy attended a Rememberance Day ceremony in the town.
And speaking at Athy Town Council last Tuesday night, November 19, Thomas Redmond told his fellow councillors that he wanted to congratulate those who had taken part in the Rememberence Day event in the town.
During Cathaoirleach’s Business, which is normally used by the Mayor to highlight issues or events he or she has attended, he explained that he had attended the event, that there was a good turnout at it and that it was “a credit to the town”.
He noted that a lot of the people from Athy who had fought in the first world war had gone to war following the urging of the local Town Council, or Urban District Council as it would have been at the time.
Cllr. Mark Dalton responded to this news with the remark: “If your predecessor could hear you saying that !”
He was referring to the late Cllr. Paddy Wright, a long standing Sinn Fein member of the council whose strong views would have left those who knew him in no doubt as to whether he would have attended such an event.
Rememberence Day is always on November 11 - the eleventh day of the eleventh month - when an armistice was signed, ending the first world war.
In Northern Ireland, it has been a divisive occasion where those of the Unionist backgrounds commemorated the day, and wore a poppy.
But times are changing, and this year, Belfast’s Sinn Fein Lord Mayor Mairtin O Muilleoir, whose brother Adrian lives in Prosperous, attended a Rememberance service and laid a wreath.