Staff at Mallow General Hospital at the recent opening of a second ward in the newly opened wing. Photo: Mallow General Hospital/X

Hospital wing naming delay

A motion to name the new wing of Mallow General Hospital in honour of a late politician has been deferred.

At a recent meeting of Cork County Council, elected members and the executive failed to agree on how best to go about naming the newly opened 48 single-bed extension at Mallow General Hospital after the late East Cork Labour Party TD Joe Sherlock.

The new wing opened late last year after a long wait and years of construction. During his time as a public representative, Mr Sherlock spearheaded efforts to retain Mallow General Hospital which was faced with closure. He died in 2007. His son Seán Sherlock is currently a Labour Party TD for East Cork and played a role in securing funding for the new wing for the hospital.

Labour Party Cllr for Mallow/Kanturk Eoghan Kenny brought a motion to have the new wing named The Sherlock Wing in recognition of the Sherlock family’s contribution to the region.“Parents and grandparents of mine would have marched the street with Joe Sherlock to keep Mallow General Hospital open,” said Cllr Kenny.

The Mallow councillor also said he has a brother who has worked in Mallow General Hospital for 10 years and that because of the efforts of Joe and Seán Sherlock, people like his brother will have a job for life. “I think it would be a fitting tribute to the Sherlock family to name the new wing of Mallow General Hospital The Sherlock Wing. You speak to any member of the community on the main street of Mallow, and they’d tell you the exact same thing.”

Cllr Kenny’s motion asked that Cork County Council would write to the HSE asking that the wing be named in honour of Joe Sherlock. However, a number of councillors felt writing to the HSE would mean Cork County Council may lose control of the decision.

Fine Gael Cllr Anthony Barry said he fully appreciates the contribution Joe Sherlock made to Cork but said he felt the motion should go to a local Strategic Policy Committees (SPC) and be dealt with “in-house”.

Fianna Fáil Cllr Seamus McGrath said: “There’s no doubt the late Joe Sherlock has made a huge contribution to public service in the East Cork and Mallow areas. However, I would fear that if this goes to the HSE it would not progress and if we genuinely want to honour the late Joe Sherlock, I think it probably does make sense that we keep this within our own control here in Cork County Council.”

After much debate, the Council Executive and elected members agreed to defer the motion until the next meeting of council in one weeks time.