A FORMER mayor of Castlebar made the surprise decision earlier this month to take a break from his daily broadcasting job to seek a return to public life after a 10-year absence.
Aidan Crowley, who served as a Fianna Fail member of Castlebar Town Council from 1999 to 2009, told The Connaught Telegraph he had been considering the move for some time.
He stated: "Anybody who knows me realises I am steeped in politics. I love talking about it on my radio show and I love talking about it with people on the street.
"But I would like to be in a position again to make a real impact in shaping the community as an elected member of Mayo County Council.
"I was very proud of what was achieved during my time on the town council, most notably the development of Lough Lannagh and its environs, the construction of the link road at St. Gerald's College and the development of the town park, while we also displayed the courage of our convictions by introducing a pay and display system with the funds being ring-fenced for the benefit of Castlebar.
"Looking to the future, I am prepared to campaign vigorously for the re-introduction of town councils which I believe are crucial to the economic and structural development of large urban areas like Castlebar.
"I am also an advocate for the diversification of the local labour market from reliance on large multi-national companies to support for service-led businesses and particularly start-up businesses, which will be crucial to job creation in and around the county town.
"I am also prepared to work hard to end a level of urban isolation which is as real and damaging as rural isolation.
"I would do so through the establishment of community networks and the promotion of pro-active residential associations in the town."