Kieran Walsh

One of the most popular highlights of the local social calendar – The Mayor’s Ball – returned last Saturday night after a two year sabbatical and was deemed a huge success with nearly 300 guests in attendance at the Tower Hotel.

Over €20,000 was raised during the night’s auction, a hugely popular feature of the ball and
the five charities to benefit are – The  Solas Cancer Support Centre, Dungarvan Community Hospital, Sacred Heart Family Resource Centre, Waterford & South Kilkenny Branch Down Syndrome Ireland, Waterford Animal Welfare.
In his address, the Mayor of Waterford City and County,  Joe Kelly thanked all for attending and noted how over €1.3 million was raised for local charities  in the past 20 years from The Mayor’s Ball events.  He paid tribute to Cha O Neill for his assistance in organising the event and Mandy Nolan, whom he said had made a great effort in getting people and firms to attend as well as sponsors for the event.

Susan Dan and John McGrath. Photos: John Power

Joan and Tony Grant and Sinéad Corcoran.

Lucy Whelan, Stephen and Imelda Walsh.

Aisling and Jonathan Downey.

The Mayor noted that Waterford was now on an upward trajectory bringing it to a new level with the new South East Technological University.  “It may not have Waterford in the title but we are now a University city,” he added.
He continued that The Greenway was having great success and was expanding into the city from Bilberry along the quays and onto a new transport hub. This, he said was another positive development along with pedestrian bridge. In the meantime, he added continued attention was being given to develop the North Quays, which is also in the project pipeline
The Mayor said he would also like to see progress made at Waterford Airport with the new runway. “So the future is bright for Ireland ‘s oldest city, which has now been accorded the honour of best place to live in Ireland, after the Irish Times award recently.”
He went on to thank   his fellow Metropolitan Mayor, Cllr. Seamus Ryan for his support. Fellow councillors and MEP Grace O Sullivan, TDs, Marc O Cathasaigh, David Cullinane, Matt Shanahan were also on attendance.
Ardmore Auctioneer, Brian Gleeson Senior carried out a great job  of encouragement pushing up the value on the auction items and pushing for extra bids. Even the cushions that Prince Charles and Camilla sat on got a  bid, if it was only a modest €150.
The €1500 voucher for Waterford Crystal got the top bid at €2,600 followed by the tour of Henry de Bromhead Horse Stables at €2,000 including lunch for 4 at the Viking Hotel.
The biggest surprise of the night was the €1500 paid for a bottle of Waterford Whiskey limited edition Waterford Pilgrimage single malt, A similar  whiskey limited edition was trading on line for over 700  but this figure was a big surprise and would amount to Nearly  100 euro  a glass.
The All Ireland final tickets got big bids also, the hurling tickets yielding €1300 for two people  including an overnight stay. The Jack O’Donohoe Munster rugby signed jersey went for €1100 and the Ballygunner hurling All Ireland title winners signed top went for €800. A Conor Murray rugby lions jersey sold for €1,00 and a week’s holiday in Tramore for six people scored €700.

Mayor of Waterford City & County Cllr. Joe Kelly and Kieran Walsh.

Cllr.  Joe Kelly, Mayor, Waterford City & County, Seamus Ryan, Metropolitan Mayor, Deirdre Ryan, Frances Kelly and Representatives from Waterford Animal Welfare.

After the business of the night concluded, those in attendance danced the night away to the Broadstreet band, followed by a disco till late.