James Kennedy has bid Cork County Council farewell.

Councillor’s final meeting

“Cork County Council is the best council in Ireland,” as far outgoing Labour Party councillor James Kennedy is concerned.

Mr Kennedy, who has represented Mallow throughout his political career, received a heartfelt send off at Monday’s meeting of Cork County Council after announcing his retirement last week.

Having first been elected to the council in 2019, Mr Kennedy previously served on Mallow Town Council between 2004 and 2014, serving as Mayor of Mallow between 2008 and 2009.

Speaking at his final meeting as an elected member of the council, Mr Kennedy thanked his colleagues and wished them luck. He said: “I want to thank all the councillors here for looking after me. The level of debate in this chamber is absolutely outstanding. Best of luck with the election guys, ye all deserve to be re-elected in my opinion.

“And don’t forget the Mallow Relief Road!” he added.

Fellow Labour Party Cllr Cathal Rassmussen said: “I’m very sorry to see James retire. I’d like to congratulate him for all his years of service, not just to the county, but to Labour as well. He’s been involved in Labour for over 50 years. I will miss him; I will miss the fun.”

Fianna Fáil Cllr Seamus McGrath said: “He was a breath of fresh air in the chamber. He certainly stoked debate quite often and thew a few grenades in now and then, but he was always well intentioned, a genuine politician who always tried to do the right thing.”

Cllr Kennedy will be replaced by Mallow native Eoghan Kenny who is set to be co-opted to Cork County Council on 26 February.