EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan to attend conference

Hundreds of young people flock to Clonmel this weekend for Macra na Feirme National Conference

Aileen Hahesy

Reporter:

Aileen Hahesy

Hundreds of young people flock to Clonmel this weekend for Macra na Feirme National Conference

Mayor of Clonmel Borough Cllr Richie Molly pictured with Macra and Clonmel Park Hotel representatives at the recent launch event for Macra's National Conference

Hundreds of Macra na Feirme members from all over the country are visiting Clonmel this weekend for the organisation's national conference at the Clonmel Park Hotel, which opens tonight (Friday). 

An estimated 1500 Macra members, including 188 delegates, are expected to attend conference events over the weekend bringing a welcome economic boost to Clonmel. 

Macra report that the Clonmel Park Hotel is booked out for the weekend and members of the youth organisation have booked accommodation in other hotels, guesthouses and B&Bs in the town and as far as Kilcoran Lodge near Cahir. 

The conference kicks off tonight with a night of entertainment in the Clonmel Park Hotel, the highlight of which will be a gig by Marty Mone of "Hit The Diff" fame.

Saturday's events will include beef and dairy farm walks at farms in the Cashel and Golden areas in the morning as well as a tour for some delegates to Con Traas' apple farm near Cahir and the Rock of Cashel. 

In the afternoon, the conference moves to the LIT campus in Thurles where EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan will be interviewed by RTE broadcaster Damien O'Reilly. There will also be panel discussions covering trade, Brexit, mental health and work life balance. 

The main events on Sunday will be the Bord Bia beef and sheep stock judging competitions at Cahir Mart and the conference's closing gala banquet in Clonmel Park Hotel that night. 

Macra National Conference Chairperson Úna Ryan, a member of Dundrum Macra branch, said this is the first time in 11 years that the conference is being hosted in Co. Tipperary.  

Check out full coverage and photos of the Conference in next week's printed edition of The Nationalist.