Well-known Laois man to close popular driving school taking up new Civil Defence role

Michelle Hogan

Reporter:

Michelle Hogan

Well-known Laois man to close popular driving school taking up new Civil Defence role

Well-known Laois man to close popular driving school taking up new Civil Defence role

A popular Laois driving school that has been in business for 25 years is set to close in a move that will see one of the longest-serving members of Laois Civil Defence take on pastures new.

Fergal Conroy’s Driving Training Services in Mountmellick is set to wind down and close in the coming weeks as the owner has taken up a new job as Civil Defence Officer for Roscommon County Council.

Fergal told the Leinster Express it has been an emotional decision to make after he unsuccessfully contested the local elections in May on the Fine Gael ticket in the Borris-in-Ossory/Mountmellick area. He has given 30 years of service with Laois Civil Defence.

He started his new job as Civil Defence Officer for Roscommon County Council on Monday.

"The same week as the election I got word of this Roscommon job so when one door closed another one opened. Of course, if I was elected I would be doing that role but my heart has been in the Civil Defence for 30 years.

"It has been emotional but these opportunities come up and you can't say no to them. It was sad to leave Laois Civil Defence, I love Laois and the people I have engaged with. My heart and my roots won't be moving from Mountmellick.

"In my new role as Civil Defence Officer for Roscommon County Council I will look after the whole organisation in Roscommon, all volunteers, develop the day to day running and training. It is different from my position in Laois, I'm the boss here now," he said. 

This move means closing his driving school business after 25 years. He shared the following notice on the business's Facebook page on Sunday evening. 

“I want to express my sincere thanks and gratitude to those I have had the privilege of allowing me to train them in various licence categories over the last 25 years.

“Driver Training was a profession that I took very seriously and loved to see the satisfaction of people firstly learning a life skill on the roads, then progressing to test standard and passing the RSA national Driving Test.

“As a lot of you know around the County outside of work and family life my love and passion for Civil Defence for the last 30 years and the services it provides to local communities across the Country.

“Tomorrow I change my career path to take up the position of Civil Defence Officer for Roscommon County Council something I am looking forward to in the years ahead.

“To all of you that I came across I thank you for choosing Fergal's Driver Training Services for car, truck, bus and trailer training and I always appreciated your custom and business.

“Fergal’s Driver Training Services will be winding down and closing for business over the next few weeks.

“Finally to my loyal employee Liam Timmons for his loyalty, honesty and dedication to me and my customers. You were more than just than an employee and part of the Conroy household for the last 23 years. I thank you from the bottom of my heart and I look forward to our continued friendship in the years ahead.

“To my family, wife Siobhán, sons Ruairí and Paudi, Dad Dave and Sister Ann. 

“Thank you for the family support in running a small business and the support that was always there for me over the years. Regards and Thanks to all,” he said. 

The well-known Mountmellick man has given 30 years of service to Laois as one of the leading members of the Civil Defence.

Laois Civil Defence paid tribute to Fergal and wished him well in his new role with Roscommon County Council. 

“On behalf of the officers and volunteers of Laois Civil Defence would like to wish Commander Fergal Conroy the very best as he finishes up with us to start a new chapter in his career as the Civil Defence Officer for Co.Roscommon.

“Fergal has given over 30 years of service to the community of Laois and has been one of the leading members of our service during this time.

“Notability Fergal has been the officer in charge of the Mountmellick unit as well as the county communications officer and is also a qualified emergency first responder.

“We wish him the very best of luck with his new job and look forward to working with him on a national level in the near future,” he said.