Friday, June 21, 2024

Local elections 2024 Galway county: Count complete as all Connemara South seats filled

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Connemara North – 4 seats

Thomas Welby (IND), Gerry King (FF), Seamus Walsh (IndI), Eileen Mannion (FG).

Gort-Kinvara – 5 seats

Geraldine Donohue (IND), Gerry Finnerty (FF), Paul Killilea (FG), Martina Kinane (FF), PJ Murphy (FG).

Loughrea – 5 seats

Ivan Canning (FF), Shane Curley (FF), Declan Kelly (IndI), Michael “Moegie” Maher (FG), Jimmy McClearn (FG).

Tuam – 7 seats

Ollie Turner (FG), Karey McHugh Farag (IND), Andrew Reddington (FG), Pete Roche (FG), Donagh Killilea (FF), Mary Hoade (FF), Shaun Cunniffe (IndI).

Ballinasloe – 6 seats

Dermot Connolly (SF), Michael Connolly (FF), Evelyn Francis Parsons (IND), Declan Geraghty (IndI), Alan Harney (FGF), Peter Keaveney (FG).

Athenry-Oranmore – 7 seats

David Collins (FG), Albert Dolan (FF), Peter Feeney (FG), James Charity (IND), Tomás Grealish (IND), Louis O’Hara (SF), Cillian Keane (FF).

Connemara South – 5 seats

Noel Thomas (IndI), Pádraig Mac an Iomaire (FG), Máirtín Lee (FF), Michael Leainde (IndI), Tomás Ó Curraoin (IND).

Michael Leainde celebrating with his team and famliy

2pm – Following neck-and-neck ten counts, all seats for the South Connemara LEA have been filled.

The new South Connemara councillors are: Noel Thomas (Independent Ireland), Pádraig Mac an Iomaire (Fine Gael), Máirtín Lee (Fianna Fáil), Michael Leainde (Independent Ireland), Tomás Ó Curraoin (Independent).

12.30pm – Fine Gael Pádraig Mac an Iomaire is the second candidate to be elected for the Connemara South LEA.

The outgoing councillor has been elected after eight counts and with 1,751 votes.

He told the Irish Independent: “I’m very happy this morning, and very privileged to be going back in this council to represent Connemara South.

This is the second time Pádraig Mac an Iomaire is elected as he added: “People look at what you have done in the last five years. First time is easier but second time is harder to get back in. But I had the work done, and it shows here in the votes.

“I’m very proud of what I have achieved in the past five years. And in another five years we’ll get done what we didn’t get done, we have to remember with two years of Covid we lost a lot of time. So five years in front of us and there’s a good bit of work to be done.”

Alastair McKinstry (Green Party) has been eliminated. Another 3 seats are to be filled.

12pm Results of the sixth and seventh counts for the Connemara South LEA have been announced.

PJ Ó Flatharta (Independent) and Kevin O’Hara (Sinn Féin) have been eliminated. Once again, no candidate has reached the quota (1,639).

However, Fine Gael Pádraig Mac an Iomaire is extremely close with 1,585 votes. He is followed by Independent Tomás Ó Curraoin (1,278 votes), Independent Ireland Michael Leainde (1,097 votes), and Fianna Fáil Máirtín Lee (1,033 votes).

10.50am – The fifth count for the Connemara South LEA has been completed but nobody reached the quota to be elected.

Sinead O’Brien (Independent) has been eliminated.

Outgoing councillor Alastair McKinstry – who so far received 797 votes – said he expects to lose his seat at Galway County Council today: “I think I will lose my seat I’m afraid. I rode the green wave back in 2019, but it was going to be hard to hold all of 47 candidates nationwide.

He said it is “unlikely” he will run again in the future, but he will continue to support the Green Party. Alastair McKinstry added he believes there is “a strong chance” the Green Party will regain seats and votes in the future.

10am – The count has now resumed at Galway Lawn Tennis Club.

Last night, Noel Thomas was elected for the Connemara South LEA, and four more candidates will be elected today.

In the meantime, the recount for Athenry-Oranmore has been completed and the results have been confirmed: David Collins (FG), Albert Dolan (FF), Peter Feeney (FG), James Charity (IND), Tomás Grealish (IND), Louis O’Hara (SF), Cillian Keane (FF) have been elected.

12.15am – After four counts, its has been announced that the count for Connemara South LEA will resume tomorrow morning at 10am.

Tomorrow the re-count for Athenry-Oranmore will also be announced.

11.10pm – Noel Thomas is the first candidate to be elected for Connemara South LEA.

With 1,648 votes, Independent Ireland candidate Noel Thomas is the first one in the Connemara South LEA to be elected. No other candidate was elected at this third count. Michael Curran (Independent) has been eliminated.

Noel Thomas is followed by Fine Gael Pádraig Joe Mac an Iomaire with 1,422 votes and Tomás Ó Curraoin (Independent) with 1,040 votes. The quota is 1,639 and four other seats are to be filled.

All other LEAs in County Galway have already filled their seats, while the recount for Athenry-Oranmore is currently underway.

10.30pm – Four eliminated but none elected at the second count for Connemara South LEA.

The candidates that have been eliminated are: Aidan Walsh (The Irish People), Geri Slevin (Independent), Críostóir Breathnach (Independent), and Doran McMahon (Irish Freedom).

9.50pm – The second and last count for Ballinasloe LEA has been announced.

The elected candidates are: Dermot Connolly (Sinn Féin), Michael Connolly (Fianna Fáil), Evelyn Francis Parsons (Independent), Declan Geraghty (Independent Ireland), Alan Harney (Fine Gael), Peter Keaveney (Fine Gael).

In the meantime, the first count for Connemara South LEA has been announced but no candidate reached the quota to be elected.

The quota for Connemara South is 1,639. Independent Ireland candidate Noel Thomas received 1,569 votes followed by Fine Gael Pádraig Joe Mac an Iomaire with 1,350 votes.

Tomás Ó Curraoin (Independent) got 974 votes, Daragh Ó Tuairisg (Fianna Fáil) got 850 votes, Máirtín Lee (Fianna Fáil) 814 votes, Dáithí Ó Cualáin (Fianna Fáil) 764 votes, Michael Leainde (Independent Ireland) 708 votes, Kevin O’Hara (Sinn Féin) 663 votes, Alastair McKinstry (Green Party) 623 votes, Sinead O’Brien (Independent) 435 votes, PJ Ó Flatharta (Independent) 423 votes, Michael Curran (Independent) 400 votes

Lastly, Doran McMahon (Irish Freedom) got 122 votes, Críostóir Breathnach (Independent) got 33 votes and Geri Slevin (Independent) 43 votes, Aidan Walsh (The Irish People) 59 votes.

Michael Connolly with his family

8.15pm – The first count of Ballinasloe LEA has been announced and four councillors have been elected.

Michael Connolly (Fianna Fáil) was elected with 2,410 votes, Evelyn Francis Parsons (Independent) was elected with 2,055 votes, Declan Geraghty (Independent Ireland) was elected with 2,262 votes, and Alan Harney (Fine Gael) was elected with 1,784 votes.

Dermot Connolly (Sinn Féin) received 1,768 votes and is expected to be elected later this evening as the quota is set at 1,777. He is followed by Peter Keaveney (Fine Gael) with 1,561 votes, Andrew Mannion (People Before Profit) with 364 votes, and Regan Maher (Sinn Féin) with 229 votes.

Dermot Connolly

8pm – Sinn Féin candidate and outgoing councillor Dermot Connolly – who is expected to be re-elected – described this year’s campaign as “a roller coaster ride” as we wait for Ballinasloe LEA first count to be announced.

Despite the nationwide result, outgoing Councillor Connolly said that overall he considers this year’s elections “encouraging” for Sinn Féin.

He said: “I’m going to be joined on Galway County Council by my colleague Louis O’Hara from the Athenry-Oranmore area, he’s after making the break through there for us, we have votes in Loughrea and in other LEAs as well. And on the Roscommon side we’re fighting hard for a seat in South Roscommon, we never had one there that I can remember for Sinn Féin. We have taken a seat in Cunty Clare, and in Galway City East.

“It’s a building process for us, and I suppose we have to drive on from that and keep building, bringing the perspective of Sinn Féin to the political scene here and throughout the west of Ireland. Slowly but surely it’s the way to go.”

6pm – The opening and sorting of the boxes for the Ballinasloe LEA and the Connemara South LEA are now both underway.

Declan Geraghty (Independent Ireland) is set to top the poll in Ballinasloe, followed by Michael Connolly (Fianna Fáil), Evelyn Francis Parsons (Independent), Dermot Connolly (Sinn Féin), newcomer Alan Harney (Fine Gael), and Peter Keaveney (Fine Gael).

While in Connemara South, Independent Ireland candidate Noel Thomas is expected to top the poll, followed by Fine Gael Pádraig Joe Mac an Iomaire, Sinn Féin Tomas Ó Curraoin, and three Fianna Fáil candidates Daragh Ó Tuairisg, Máirtín Lee, and Daithí Ó Cualáin.

Galway Lawn Tennis Club

4.50pm – After 12 counts, the elected candidates for Tuam have been announced.

They are: Shaun Cunniffe (Independent Ireland), Mary Hoade (Fianna Fáil), Donagh Killilea (Fianna Fáil), Karey McHugh Farag (Independent), Andrew Reddington (Fine Gael), Peter Roche (Fine Gael), and Ollie Turner (Fine Gael).

4.30pmCount 10 was supposed to be the last one for Athenry-Oranmore, but a full re-count has now been called – and granted.

None of the last three candidates (Louis O’Hara, Cillian Keane and Eoghan Gallagher) reached the quota to get the only two seats left during count 10.

As a result, Cillian Keane and Louis O’Hara were called elected as they both received more votes than Eoghan Gallagher. Following the announcement, Eoghan Gallagher has asked for a recount of the votes. The request was granted and will take place later today.

In the meantime, all the candidates for Loughrea have been elected: Ivan Canning (Fianna Fáil) , Michael “Moegie” Maher (Fine Gael), Shane Curley (Fianna Fáil), Declan Kelly (Independent Ireland), Jimmy McClearn (Fine Gael)

Fine Gael Peter Feeney

3pm – It’s neck and neck for the last two seats at Athenry-Oranmore LEA.

Fine Gael Peter Feeney was elected with 1,910 votes. Now, three people are running for the last two seats. Louis O’Hara (Sinn Féin) has so far received 1,512 votes, Cillian Keane (Fianna Fáil) received 1,431 votes, and Eoghan Gallagher (Fine Gael) received 1,402 votes.

While Shelly Herterich Quinn (Fianna Fáil) has lost her seat at Galway County Council. Despite receiving 1,118 votes, the Fianna Fáil councillor was eliminated after nine counts for the Athenry-Oranmore LEA.

Tuam councillor Mary Hoade has been elected for the 6th time in a row

2.30pm – Tuam councillor Mary Hoade has been elected for the 6th time in a row

After ten counts, Mary Hoade (Fianna Fáil) has been elected in the Tuam LEA. Mary Hoade has been a councillor since 1999 and she was elected with 1,933 votes.

She told the Irish Independent: “It’s an honour to be consistently re-elected on every occasion, and I just want to take this opportunity to thank my canvass team, the electors and everybody who has worked in the campaign up to now.

When asked why residents keep voting for her after all these years, she said: “They know I’m a hard worker, I work hard to represent the constituency, I can be relied on and I’m always accessible and available. I think that’s what local politics is all about.”

She is the third candidate to be elected in Tuam after Andrew Reddington (Fine Gael) and Peter Roche (Fine Gael).

In the meantime, Eoin Madden (Green Party) has been eliminated from the Athenry-Oranmore run, while Islammiyah Kadejo (Green Party) and Tom Quirke (Fianna Fáil) have been eliminated in Tuam.

1pm – The wait goes on for Tuam candidates as only two have been elected so far out of seven seats. After eight counts, Deborah Reynolds (Sinn Féin) has been eliminated.

Meanwhile, in the Athenry-Oranmore LEA, Independent James Chairty was elected after six counts. He is the third candidate to be elected in the area along with David Collins and Albert Dolan. The three men are all outgoing councillors.

And in Loughrea LEA, Michael “Moegie” Maher (Fine Gael) was elected during the second count. He is the fourth outgoing councillor to be re-elected.

Overall, outgoing councillors are going extremely well at this year’s elections in County Galway.

12pmThree of the five seats in Loughrea have been filled at the first count.

Outgoing councillors Shane Curley (Fianna Fáil), Jimmy McClearn (Fine Gael) and Declan Kelly (Independent Ireland) have all been re-elected. It is likely the other outgoing councillors will also retain their seat.

Declan Kelly is one of the three Loughrea candidates to be elected at the first count

In the meantime, Fine Gael David Collins has been elected in the Athenry-Oranmore LEA after five counts.

He is the third candidate to be elected in the area after Albert Dolan (Fianna Fáil) and Tomás Grealish (Independent), who both exceeded the quota at the first count.

While in the Tuam LEA Blessing Oguekwe (Labour) has been eliminated at the seventh count.

11amIn the Athenry-Oranmore LEA Maria Carr has been eliminated at the fourth count. David Collins only need four more votes to secure a seat.

While in the Tuam LEA, Ross Culligan (the National Party) was eliminated during the sixth count. The quota is at 1,920 and Mary Hoade is very close to be elected with 1,843 votes so far. She is followed by Shaun Cunniffe (Independent Ireland) with 1,632 votes, Donagh Killilea (Fianna Fáil) with 1,533 votes and Ollie Turner (Fine Gael) with 1,518 votes.

David Collins

10.15am – Independent candidate Colin Lynch has been eliminated from the Tuam run during the fourth count, while Danann Liam Gaughan (The Irish People) has been eliminated after the fifth count.

Shortly after, the results of the third count for the Athenry-Oranmore LEA have been announced. The quota is set at 1,718 and nobody was elected or eliminated.

However, Fine Gael David Collins and independent James Charity are close to be elected as they received 1,705 and 1,614 votes.

David Collins said he is happy with the results so far: “I’m delighted, I got a great mandate from local people, they gave me a great first preference of votes. I’ve been a councillor the last five years, working hard, and people have realised that and I’m delighted. I’m delighted for my canvass team, for my family. We’re nearly there.”

9am – The counting has now resumed at Galway Lawn Tennis Club.

Last night, the third count for the Tuam LEA and the second count for the Athenry-Oranmore LEA were completed. However, both areas have to elect another five candidates.

Later today, the count for Connemara South, Loughrea, and Ballinasloe will also begin.

The second day of the count begins at Galway Lawn Tennis Club

1.30amThe results of the third count for the Tuam LEA have been announced. However, nobody was elected or eliminated.

In the meantime, the results of the second count for the Athenry-Oranmore LEA have been announced but nobody was elected or eliminated.

The count will resume tomorrow morning at 9am.

Midnight – The first count of the Athenry-Oranmore LEA has been completed and two candidates have been elected.

As expected, Albert Dolan (Fianna Fáil) was elected with 2,393 votes along with Tomás Grealish (Independent) who was elected with 1,843 votes.

Fianna Fáil candidate Albert Dolan the moment he learnt he was offcially elected

Among the other candidates, David Collins (Fine Gael) got 1,586 votes, James Charity (Independent) 1,565 votes, Peter Feeney (Fine Gael) 1,213 votes, Eoghan Gallagher (Fine Gael) 1,018 votes, Louis O’Hara (Sinn Féin) 1,005 votes, Cillian Keane (Fianna Fáil) 937 votes, Shelly Herterich Quinn (Fianna Fáil) 792 votes, Eoin Madden (Green Party) 454 votes, Fergal Landy (Labour) 409 votes, Sean Hehir (Independent Ireland) 301 votes, Maria Carr (The Irish People) 226.

Moments later, the second count for Tuam LEA was announced but no-one was elected or eliminated.

11pm – Tallies indicate that young Fianna Fáil candidate Albert Dolan, who is seeking election for the second time, will top the poll in the Athenry-Oranmore LEA.

As Albert Donal is waiting for the first count to be announced, he told the Irish Independent: “The tallies were absolutely incredible, something I don’t think we could have ever predicated. I’m looking forward to the first count.

“I think it’s a reflection that the people o the Athenry-Oranmore area want to see me drive on, they want to see our community represented and they want to see candidates that have an energy and a passion for community and ultimately candidates that want the best for their area”.

Andrew Reddington with his family and supporters the moment he heard he was elected.

10pmResults of the first count for the Tuam LEA have been announced: Andrew Reddington (Fine Gael) has been elected with 2,784 votes while Peter Roche (also Fine Gael) has been elected with 2,553 votes.

At the first count, Shaun Cunniffe (Independent Ireland) received 1,438 votes, Donagh Killilea (Fianna Fáil) 1,379 votes, Mary Hoade (Fianna Fáil) 1,326 votes, Ollie Turner (Fine Gael) 1,210 votes, Joe Sheridan (Fianna Fáil) 1,153 votes, Karey McHugh Farag (Independent) 1,042 votes

Also, Luke Peter Silke (Aontú) got 553 votes, Stiofán De Lundres Ó Dálaigh (Sinn Féin) received 458 votes, Tom Quirke (Fianna Fáil) got 427 votes, Islammiyah Kadejo (Green Party) got 257 votes, Deborah Reynolds (Sinn Féin) got 208 votes, Blessing Oguekwe (Labour) got 206 votes, Ross Culligan (National Party) received 149 votes, Danann Liam Gaughan (The Irish People) received 118 votes, and Colin Lynch (Independent) got 95 votes.

This is a big achievement for Andrew Reddington, who in 2019 was passed the quota for only 10 votes.

He said to the Irish Independent he is delighted with the results: “We ran a long camping, we started at the end of January, we knocked to as many doors as we could. My campaign has been very honest, I work hard and I do my best for everybody. I’m delighted with the votes today, I had great support from my wife, and my three kids, and we had 75 people canvassing so we have a big team. And it’s great to see a lot of those people here today, without that team I wouldn’t have got elected.

“In 2019 I got the last seat by 10 votes, and what I want to say to everybody is there’s a lot of people who put their name forward today, there’s 17 candidates all from different political backgrounds but at the end of the day they put their name forward to represent their community and I applaud them for putting their name forward.

“Councillors play a huge role in local areas and community groups and I’m very honoured to be in a position to retain my seat”.

Peter Roche as he learnt he was elected

9pmGerry Finnerty (Fianna Fáil) is the fifth and last councillor to be elected for the Gort-Kinvara LEA.

Following five counts, Gerry Finnerty has been elected along with Geraldine Donohue (Independent), Paul Killilea (Fine Gael), Martina Kinane (Fianna Fáil), and PJ Murphy (Fine Gael).

7.30pm – TD Hildegarde Naughton is at Galway Lawn Tennis Club showing her support for the Fine Gael candidates.

She told the Irish Independent that the early results both in Galway and nationwide indicate it is a “a positive day” for The Fine Gael party.

She said: “There are sitting Fine Gael Councillors that have a very good track record and work hectic on the ground and they’re getting that recognition. We got some very good new candidates as well, hopefully they’ll get over the line, one of two got over already. So a positive day I think for Fine Gael here in Galway.”

In the meantime, results of the third count for the Gort-Kinvara LEA have been announced but no-one has reached the quota to get the last available seat.

Gerry Finnerty (Fianna Fáil) received 1,415 votes, Megan Flynn Dixon (Green Party) received 852 votes, Lucina Kelly (Sinn Féin) received 559 votes and Alan Sweeney (The Irish People) received 322 votes.

The quota is set at 1,658. Paul Killilea (Fine Gael), PJ Murphy (Fine Gael), Martina Kinane (Fianna Fáil) and Geraldine Donohue (Independent) have already been elected.

TD Hildegarde Naughton at Galway Lawn Tennis Club

6.20pmAll four candidates for Connemara North LEA have been elected during the fourth and last count.

Gerard King (Fianna Fáil) was elected with 1,663 votes, Eileen Mannion (Fine Gael) was elected with 1,684 votes, Séamus Walsh (Independent Ireland) was elected with 1,598 votes and Thomas Welby (Independent) was elected with 1,591 votes.

6pm – Four out of the five seats at the Gort-Kinvara LEA have been filled. During the second count, Paul Killilea (Fine Gael) has been elected with 1,717 votes.

The quota is set at 1,658 and there is only one seat left as PJ Murphy (Fine Gael), Martina Kinane (Fianna Fáil) and Geraldine Donohue (Independent) have been elected during the first count.

During the second count, Gerry Finnerty (Fianna Fáil) received 1,301 votes, Megan Flynn Dixon (Green Party) received 781 votes, Lucina Kelly (Sinn Féin) received 537 votes and Alan Sweeney (The Irish People) received 303 votes.

5.40pmResults of the third count for Connemara North LEA have been announced.

Independent Ireland’s Seamus Walsh (elected during the second count) received 1,598 votes, Thomas Welby (elected during the first count) received 1,591 votes.

Eileen Mannion (Fine Gael) received 1,572 votes; Gerard King (Fianna Fáil) received 1,496 votes, Mánus Ó Conaire (Independent) received 973 votes; Tom Healy (Sinn Féin) received 671 votes.

Daniel Gleeson (Green Party) and Críostóir Breathnach (Independent) were excluded.

In the meantime, the count is also underway for Tuam LEA. According to tallies, Fine Gael’s Andrew Reddington and Pete Roche are doing extremely well.

They are followed by two Fianna Fáil candidates, Mary Hoade, Donagh Killilea and Joe Sheridan, as well as Independent Ireland’s Shaun Cunniffe, and new candidate Ollie Turner (Fine Gael).

Aontú candidate Luke Silke and Sinn Féin’s Stiofán De Lundres Ó Dálaigh are expected to be eliminated.

PJ Murphy celebrating after being elected at the first count

5pm – Three councillors have been elected as the results of the first count for Gort-Kinvara LEA have been announced.

PJ Murphy (Fine Gael) has been elected with 1,953 votes and is followed by Martina Kinane (Fianna Fáil) elected with 1,884 votes and Geraldine Donohue (Independent) elected with 1,761 votes.

The quota is set at 1,658 votes and Paul Killilea (Fine Gael) is very close to be elected as well after receiving 1,538 votes. He is followed by Gerry Finnerty (Fianna Fáil) with 1,225 votes, Megan Flynn Dixon (Green Party) with 762 votes, Lucina Kelly (Sinn Féin) with 523 votes and Alan Sweeney (The Irish People) with 296 votes.

PJ Murphy, who’s elected for the second time, said: “I’m absolutely delighted to top the poll here on the Gort-Kinvara LEA. It was quite a close race, the leading independent candidate, Fianna Fáil candidate and myself were really neck to neck throughout the campaign.

“Now the work begins, we have a lot of work to do to continue the representation for the people of the Gort-Kinvara elected area and I’m very much looking forward to the next five years to represent my people.”

Shortly after, the second count for Connemara North was announced.

Independent Ireland’s Seamus Walsh was elected with 1,598 votes, followed by Thomas Welby (elected during the first count) with 1,591 votes.

Eileen Mannion (Fine Gael) received 1,463 votes; Gerard King (Fianna Fáil) received 1,456 votes, Mánus Ó Conaire (Independent) received 920 votes; Tom Healy (Sinn Féin) received 600 votes; and Daniel Gleeson (Green Party) received 255 votes while Críostóir Breathnach (Independent) received 71 votes.

Thomas Welby with his family

3.30pm – The first count for Connemara North has been announced: Independent candidate Thomas Welby is the first candidate in Ireland to be elected today.

Welby has been elected with 1,758 votes (exceeding the quota which is set at 1,591) and is followed by Séamus Walsh (Independent Ireland) with 1,525 votes; Gerard King (Fianna Fáil) with 1,435 votes and Eileen Mannion (Fine Gael) with 1,425 votes; Mánus Ó Conaire (Independent) with 905 votes; Tom Healy (Sinn Féin) with 591 votes; and Daniel Gleeson (Green Party) with 248 votes.

Thomas Welby commented: “I’m delighted, it’s the fourth time topping the poll, the second time as the first to be elected in Ireland. I just want to thank everybody, my family in particular, my brother, my wife, my children, and grandchildren, sons in law, the support I got from relatives and friends, I’m really delighted. ”I look forward to another five years and 20 years in politics. My father was first elected 50 years ago, in 1974, and I’m really happy to be able to continue.”

2pm – Counting has also commenced for the Gort-Kinvara LEA.

According to tallies, Martina Kinane (Fianna Fáil) and PJ Murphy (Fine Gael) are very strong and are followed by Independent candidate Geraldine Donohue and Fine Gael newcomer Paul Killilea.

It is understood Sinn Féin’s Lucina Kelly and The Irish People’s Alan Sweeney are out of the running.

Alan Sweeney commented: “In terms of being a first time candidate my intention was to put my name out there, to break the ice, to give people an opportunity to hear my point of view. People have to start somewhere, sometimes it could take people two or three elections to even get in. I’m happy enough and I believe next time it will be a lot better.”

Lucina Kelly added: “I’m absolutely thrilled I did it. I wouldn’t be high profile in the area, but I’m very happy I did it, I met a lot of wonderful people at the doors, so no regrets whatsoever.”

1pm – The sorting of ballot papers is underway in the local elections at the County Galway Count Centre.

The first ballot boxes to be opened at Galway Lawn Tennis Club are the ones for Conamara North.

According to tallies, the four outgoing councillors (Fianna Fáil Cllr. Gerard King, independent Cllr. Thomas Welby, Fine Gael Cllr. Eileen Mannion, Independent Ireland Cllr. Séamus Walsh) are expected to be re-elected.

Among them, Independent candidate Thomas Welby expects to be elected on the first count for the fourth time in his career.

Galway Lawn Tennis Club

Green Party candidate Daniel Gleeson, who is waiting for the official results along with his newborn baby, Lughaidh, said he is still hopeful the Green Party will do well around the county: “I feel okay, we weren’t expecting to do fantastic. It’s the first time a Green party candidate has run in Conamara North and we had a baby halfway through the campaign which curtailed my ability to go out. But we’re really hopeful that around the county the Green party will be gaining seats. So we’re cautiously optimistic, the day could turn out well for us in the end.”

Meanwhile, it is understood a voter has lost a diamond ring in one of the boxes from Ballinderreen yesterday. Returning Officer Marian Chambers Higgins announced they are looking for it.

We will have all the updates from the Galway local election count as it happens here on this page.

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