Cunningham heads task force against alcohol
Jimmy Cunningham is a local builder who is deeply involved
in the scouting movement.
He is also the chairperson of the youth facilities sub committee
of the Task Force Against Alcohol and Substance Abuse.
Jimmy is married to Dympna and they have two daughters,
Kelly Ann (14) and Alice (11).
The family lives at Donoghue, Carrickmacross. Jimmy is the
son of Gene and Rita Cunningham of St Josephs Tce.
He is the oldest of the family and he has two brothers.
Pat and Bobby and one sister, Caroline.
I would describe myself, I suppose, as outgoing and
fun loving. I like to get involved in anything thats going
Jimmy went to the Regional Technical College in Dundalk
which is now the Dundalk Institute of Technology where he
obtained a Diploma in Construction Studies.
On leaving college I worked for Monarch Properties
for two years which was run by the late Phil Monaghan.
Jimmy was involved in the design and construction of structures
such as The Square Shopping Centre in Tallaght and Dundalk
and Navan Shopping Centres.
In or around 1987 Jimmy started work in the family business,
Farney Builders along with his father Gene and his uncle,
the late Packie Cunningham.
There has always been a great tradition of building
in my family. The business started by my grandfather, James
who went into partnership with my uncle Packie. My father,
Gene, had his own construction company for many years but
when Packie got older he joined forces with him and Farney
Builders was established. jimmy says that he has been on
building sites from he was eight or nine years of age.
I was always destined to work in the business.
There has always been great characters in the building
game and no two days are the same on any building site.
There is also the challenge of getting involved in the design
of a building and then seeing it through until its completed
to the clients satisfaction.
Jimmy explains that since 1987 the building trade has changed
There is far more emphasis on safety nowadays which
is a good thing. The other most notable thing would be that
the trade is less labour intensive as more specialist machinery
is now involved at all stages of construction. Jimmy has
been a member of the Carrick scout troop for thirty years.
He is currently unit leader in Carrick and previously held
the prestigious post of regional scouting commissioner which
covered Monaghan, Louth and Cavan. I love scouting
because it involves many outdoor pursuits such as camping
and hill walking. Its down to practicality and much like
the building trade as it happens. The biggest kick that
I get out of scouting is watching the young scouts progress
in the movement to such a stage that they are able to look
after themselves, said Jimmy.
As Chairman of the Task Force Against Alcohol and Substance
Abuse, Jimmy said that it is important that there are alternative
social outlets for the young people of Carrickmaccross.
There is still an ever increasing problem n Carrickmacross
with under age drinking and drug use.
There must be alternative facilities made available to our
youth otherwise these problems could spiral out of control.
This situation is not acceptable and needs to be addressed
Jimmy says that his favourite food is steak and chips.
I look forward to that particularly after a hard Monday
on the site. It keeps me going for the rest of the week.
Jimmys favourite actress is Willis former wife
Demi Moore. Not surprisingly his favourite film is Die Hard.
The Die Hard serious of films were great but the first
one was by far the best as far as I am concerned.
Jimmys greatest memories are the day that he got married
to Dympna and then the birth of his two daughters.
I also remember going to see the pope in Drogheda
in 1979. It sticks in my mind because we went with the scouts
and we were right up the front providing a guard of honour
Jimmy says that his favourite holiday destination is Florida.
I take a few weeks holiday every year and Florida has everything
- plenty of attractions for all ages and warm weather. I
also like getting away on the odd scouting weekend in Ireland.
Jimmy says that his favourite musical artists are REM and
Bob Dylan. I have seen both in concert, I was at REM
last year at Marley Park in Dublin and Dylan at Slane and
the first ever Slane Concert. Both those concerts also hold
great memories for me.
There is also a fantastic tradition of bands in Carrickmacross
which is great and such talent should be encouraged at all
With a bit of a smile Jimmy says that his greatest fear
is dying. I say that because I like to be in full
control of any given situation and I have no control over
that. I dont know what to expect!
Jimmy thinks that Carrickmacross needs to rediscover its
sense of community. In my opinion the towns
population is increasing at such a rate that people no longer
seem to have time for each other or getting involved in
things for the benefit of the overall community.
I grew up in Carrick and the town, despite its few
problems, is still a great place to live and raise a family.
Courtesy of the Dundalk Democrat