We are delighted to announce our Grand Marshal 2019 is the very well know and very popular business man, Pat Lynch. Pat has the distinction of being the founder of the parade when he served on Chamber Management Committee many years ago -
Now, 60 years after opening his first store, Pat continues his trade, enjoying nothing more than the buy and the sell, chatting with customers and completing that deal! Pat got involved in Longford Chamber of Commerce as soon as he arrived in Longford. Martin Timlin was President at the time. In those days, Dublin was the only county to hold a St Patricks Day Parade. Pat’s wish was for Longford to host their own and with this in mind, he raised the subject of a Longford Parade with the Chamber. The matter was discussed over the next couple of years and in the early seventies, with the backing of Paddy Glennon, the first Longford St Patrick’s Day Parade took place. Paddy agreed to provide two lorries to be used as floats, plus an additional two floats from Glennon’s factory -
In that first year, eleven bands and twenty-
The entire Chamber were very much involved, members including Pat Stenson, John Brown, Brendan Farrell, Anthony Farrell, Hugh Shannon and Bernie Crossan were key participants of the organising committee. Local football clubs acted as stewards and other volunteers helped feed participants in the Army Barracks -
In the 1980s Albert Reynolds was invited to take on the Presidency of the Chamber, but as he travelled quite a bit, he only agreed to take the office on the condition that Pat acted as Vice President and filled in on his absence. Pat agreed and fulfilled this role for five years. During his term as Vice President he, along with Albert Reynolds and Pat Stenson from the Chamber sat on a committee that identified a derelict space which could be turned into a public amenity for the people of Longford – this is now known as the Mall Complex, an amenity enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.
The Longford St. Patricks Day Parade has been an important annual event for Pat, initially as founder and organiser, then in the latter years as a spectator and admirer. Since its inception over forty years ago, the parade has continued to grow in sheer numbers of people as well as in its importance to families from Longford and surrounding counties.
Pat a fervent GAA supporter is well known for flying the flags for both Cavan and Longford -