The Emly Christmas tree lights were switched on by centenarian Mary Catherine Buckley at a lovely gathering outside Byrnes pub in Emly Village.
“The Emly community have paid for a Christmas tree every year for the last four years,” explained Chairman of the Emly Community Council Rodney McManus. “We pay for it through donations and fundraising including Fun walks, runs and lots of other activities.”
The crowd were entertained by Christmas carols from St. Ailbe’s church choir and centenarian Mary Catherine Buckley was asked to officially switch on the lights. “It’s lovely being here to do this and the committee gave me a beautiful bouquet of flowers.”
Emly has won many awards in Tidy towns categories and European awards for it’s beauty and innovation locals are very proud of the community spirit that thrives in the area.
“I’ve been born and reared here and I think the community spirit here is wonderful. You feel very looked after and safe here,” said Pasty Hennessey who has lived in Emly all his life.
Josephine McCarthy, originally from Pallasgreen came to Emly 35-years ago when she married Emly native Phillip and raised six children. “It’s lovely living here. The best thing is the people. It’s a lovely place to live.”
James White originally from Galbally also came to Emly to marry. “I’ve lived here for thirty years and the people are great.”
“I went to England from Emly in my twenties but I returned and raised my family here,” said Josephine Cleary. “It’s a great community to come together and fundraise and help you out in every way and it’s safe for the kids.
Emly has a population of about 1000 people and has many different clubs. “The clubs and different organisations that are in the parish and the way they pull together and work together is terrific. It’s what makes Emly work,” added Pat Hennessey.
Just recently Emly performed its Christmas Pantomime. Nora Hennessey, Choir leader at St. Ailbe’s church choir spoke about its success. “We had sixty community members taking part and it was a great success over four nights. Well done to everyone involved.”
As the lights twinkled in the Christmas tree and St. Ailbe’s beautiful church was lit up in the dark in the background, Emly citizen Larry Joy said of the village… “It’s where I come from and it’s where my roots are… Emly is home.”