Donegal Town Community Band have won their second consecutive All-Ireland Fleadh Ceoil Championship.
They competed in Derry yesterday afternoon and, at 5.15pm, were announced overall winners. After a triumphant parade through the Maiden City, they returned to Donegal town. There, met by the re-formed St Peter’s Band from Mountcharles, they marched from SuperValu car park to the Diamond, where they were met with a rapturous reception.
It’s an amazing achievement for the band, which comprises more than 70 members, aged 6 to 16, and is run entirely by volunteers.
The band, which was originally started up in 1988, enjoyed tremendous success for over a decade and, after another five years or so, it broke up.
Pauric Kennedy and Linda O’Donnell started the band up again in 2010 and, in such a short time, they’ve already won two Ulster titles and now, two All-Irelands.
Pauric, who is also the band’s chairman, said he was “absolutely delighted at the band’s achievement and very, very proud of them”. He added: “It’s well deserved, given all their hard work and dedication.”
Bandmaster Brendan McMonagle is also a finalist in another national competition. He’s the Donegal finalist in the ‘My Local Legend’ competition on TV3’s Ireland AM. He was nominated by Jasmin Kennedy, a member of the band, and TV3 broadcast an entire segment about the band, filmed in Donegal town, last Monday.
To support the band in this competition, vote for Brendan by going to www.tv3.ie and selecting Ireland AM or going to the TV3IrelandAM Facebook page. You can also see the tv segment on these links.