While Noel McCarthy of Fine Gael took the first seat in the Fermoy Electoral Area (FEA) Local Elections with plenty to spare (1,116 over the quota), the big winners were Fianna Fáil (Frank O’Flynn, Deirdre O’Brien and William O’Leary) taking all three seats in the first count.

Kay Dawson (Fine Gael) took the fifth seat in the third count but the real drama was for the sixth seat, going all the way to the eight count, eventually seeing Independent candidate Frank Roche, being elected at the expense of June Murphy (Social Democrats).

The others to lose out were David Kenneally (Labour) and Helen White (Sinn Fein).

The turnout in the Fermoy Electoral Area was 50.4% from an electorate of 29,888 and the quota was 2,116.

The first preference votes and percentages are as follows: McCarthy 3,228 (21.8%), O’Flynn 2,895 (19.5%), O’Brien 2,225 (15%), O’Leary 2,212 (14.9%), Dawson 1,527 (10.3%), Roche 899 (6.1%), Murphy 676 (4.6%), White 617 (4.2%), Kenneally 531 (3.6%).

There were 14,810 valid votes cast along with 259 spoiled votes.

At the time of writing, in the 4-seater Cahir LEA, Independent candidate Andy Moloney was elected in the first count; in Clonmel LEA (6 seats) Michael Murphy (FG), Siobhan Ambrose (FF) and Pat English (WUA) were elected in the first count while counting was continuing in Waterford and Limerick.