The Insider: Independents bow out

‘Mr Kilkenny Castle’ Frank Kavanagh has revealed to the Insider that he will not stand in the local elections.

‘Mr Kilkenny Castle’ Frank Kavanagh has revealed to the Insider that he will not stand in the local elections.

A well-known local figure, Kavanagh had been preparing to run in the Kilkenny City East area as an independent candidate, but has now officially pulled out. He called on the newly-elected councillors to encourage employment by supporting businesses, and to reduce parking charges and commercial rates.

It follows the decisions of other potential independent candidates, Mary Delaney and John Stapeleton, to rule themselves out also. A lack of independents is a feature of these local elections.

Meanwhile, another independent candidate has officially put himself forward for the election. Ramie Leahy has lodged his papers, and is asking the public for their votes.

Leahy says the IDA has not done enough to support Kilkenny, and this needs to be rectified urgently. He also says a new bridge is required north of the city to facilitate heavy traffic, and the money allocated for the Central Access Scheme should be deflected to support this, as well as other concepts including an auditorium for the brewery site, a Norman museum near St Francis’ Abbey, and a purpose-built art gallery of international standard.

Leahy also wants the position of Mayor of Kilkenny to be put to publc vote, and is calling for significant investment in regions such as Thomastown, Gowran, Inistioge, and Graiguenamanagh to promote them as tourist destinations and strong agricultural areas.