Oasis for Charlestown?
IF rock brothers, Liam and Noel Gallagher of Oasis accept a civic reception, agreed by Mayo County Council yesterday (Monday), it is highly unlikely that Cllr Johnnie O’Malley of Ballina will be serving any Champagne Supernova.
More likely he will be looking back in anger at his town’s Mayor Michelle Mulherin’s address to the chamber, which convinced councillors of every hue to agree to her proposal for the civic honour.
However, he will be happy that his motion for the Council to examine the protocols around the hosting of such receptions. After a rather colourful debate – during which retiring Cllr Johnny Mee admitted his punk rock predilections – Des Mahon proposed that the reception may be held in Charlestown.
The sons of Peggy Sweeney of Charlestown, Noel and Liam have been regular visitors to the east Mayo town. The famous Mancunians were particularly close to their maternal grandmother Margaret, who died in 2000, and have often referred in media interviews to their memories of picking blackberries and chasing cows on summer visits to Charlestown in the 1970s and 1980s.
Mayor Mulherin observed that the duo represent ‘the story of the Irish dream going abroad’ and underpinned an aspect of the epic tale of the Irish diaspora. She also said that when the Gallagher brothers play on the stage of Slane later this year they will attract around 80,000 fans.
“By according them a civic reception we are claiming these sons of emigrants back,” she said.
Cllr O’Malley remained unimpressed, referring to a row in which the brothers were involved in Munich when Liam lost his teeth.
“I don’t think Liam and Noel Gallagher are of iconic stature or are two people I would hold up to my sons as examples. I’m saying, I’m sorry I won’t agree with it,” said Cllr O’Malley.
Despite his belligerence, one councillor after another supported Mayor Mulherin’s proposal. A clear case of wonderwall as opposed to stone wall.