Former mayor and soldier Tom pledges his support

Aileen Hahesy

Aileen Hahesy

Eighty-seven year-old former Mayor of Clonmel and retired soldier Tom Carroll was in the front row at the public meeting to show his support for saving the barracks where he once served.

The former Labour councillor was involved in the last major campaign to save Kickham Barracks from closure in the mid-1990s and recalled meeting the former Defence Minister Hugh Coveney as part of a deputation of local public representatives that lobbied him to keep the barracks open.

Their campaign had succeeded in postponing the barracks closure to the present day, he said.

“I have a great affection for Clonmel. Clonmel was good to me, so I intend to be good to Clonmel. It gave me a wife and home and made me mayor although I was only a blow in,” he told the packed public meeting.

Mr Carroll, who is also a former ONE activist, said he helped build Block B of Kickham Barracks and fondly remembered that when he and others were being transferred to Kickham Barracks and they asked someone what Clonmel was like, the answer was “the canteen was bad but the women were plentiful.”

Elaine Troy of the Save Kickham Barracks campaign thanked Mr Carroll for attending the meeting.