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Council pays tribute to Bernard McGlinchey

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A ‘formidable’ politician and a man of great vision, was how members of Donegal County Council described former County Councillor Bernard McGlinchey at their meeting in Lifford today.
At the outset of the adjourned meeting, Fianna Fail party whip, Cllr Ciaran Brogan, proposed the council adjourn for one hour as a mark of respect.
He said Bernard McGlinchey had served on the council for 44 years and his finger prints were all over Letterkenny and Donegal.
“Letterkenny would not be what it is today, but for Bernard McGlinchey. He made no apologies for the fact that he fought hard for Letterkenny,” he said.
“Bernard was a leading member of the party for years,” he added.
Mr McGlinchey was first elected to Donegal County Council in 1960 and served until 2004. He was a member of Seanad Eireann from 1961 to 1981 and a member of Letterkenny Town Council from 1955 to 2004.
He died on Thursday evening last and was buried on Sunday.
Cllr Bernard McGuinness, on behalf of the Fine Gael party said Bernard McGlinchey was a ‘formidable’ figure on the council.
“He was forceful in his views, but as somebody who opposed him- he was fair. In a political power sharing agreement drawn up by Bernard it lasted for some time on this council.”
“He was also a very successful businessman in Letterkenny and in Inishowen where he owned the Swilly Hotel. He was always a county man and wore the jersey wherever he was,” he said.
Independent Cllr Ian McGarvey, said he was a man of ‘great vision’.
“He also had aspirations to achieve great things. He came through times of great turmoil in the council. If Bernard had something to say to you, he would say it,” he said.
“He contributed greatly to Letterkenny and the development of many other parts of the county,” he added.
On behalf of the Labour Party, Cllr Martin Farren, said Mr McGlinchey had left a lasting legacy while Sinn Fein’s Marie Therese Gallagher, said he was a ‘fatherly figure’ for many young councillors over the years.
“No matter what side of the political fence you are on, his legacy will live on,” she said.
The County Manager, Mr Seamus Neely, said when he joined the council in the 80’s Cllr McGlinchey was ‘in full flight’.
“I worked with him in Letterkenny Town Council in the 90s on many projects such as the acquisition of the lands for the council offices in Letterkenny and for a town park,” he said.
Members adjourned the meeting for one hour at 11.40 as a mark of respect.

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