Councillor Thomas O’Reilly appointed as Council Chair for 2023-2024

6th June 2023

Chair and Vice Chair 2023 2024

Fermanagh and Omagh District Council held its Annual Meeting in The Grange, Omagh on Monday 5 June 2023, with Councillor Thomas O’Reilly, Sinn Féin, nominated as Council Chair for 2023-24. Councillor Ann-Marie Donnelly, Sinn Féin, was nominated as Council Vice Chair for the incoming year.

Accepting the role of Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Councillor O’Reilly said:

“It is a personal honour and privilege to be nominated to the position of Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council. I would like to express my thanks to my party colleagues who nominated me to the role for the incoming year. I look forward to working collaboratively with all Council Members in the year ahead, building on the work of the previous Council mandate and progressing a significant programme of activity to improve the lives and wellbeing of our residents and the district as a whole.

I believe it is important that our Council is accessible to all residents and that we actively engage with them.  I particularly look forward to engaging with the business community and highlighting the many issues this sector faces as we continue to emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic and the Cost of Living crisis.

I also look forward to championing our young people who are the future of our District and I hope to have the opportunity to meet with a variety of young people during my year to hear their views and, where possible, take on board their aspirations for our District.

I would like to pay tribute to the outgoing Chair and Vice Chair, Councillor Barry McElduff and Councillor Allan Rainey MBE, on their exemplary work over the past year and their dedication to the roles.”

The 40 Member Fermanagh and Omagh District Council includes 14 new Councillors with overall representation as follows:

Sinn Féin – 21 Members
UUP – 7 Members
DUP – 6 members
SDLP – 3 Members
Alliance Party – 2 Members
Independent – 1 Member

Membership of each of the Council’s Standing Committees was also agreed at the Annual Meeting with 17 Member Committees and a 13 Member Planning Committee.  The following Councillors nominated as Committee Chairs for 2023-2024:

Environmental Services: Councillor Debbie Coyle
Regeneration & Community: Councillor Mark Buchanan
Policy & Resources: Councillor Stephen McCann
Planning: Councillor Robert Irvine

Nominations to all positions of responsibility and committees were based on d’Hondt.

The Council term will run for four years, 2023-2027, with Councillors making decisions on behalf of residents to improve the overall social, economic and environmental wellbeing of the district.

The Council will oversee the delivery of a range of Council services including Planning, Environmental Health; Registration of Births, Deaths, Marriages and Civil Partnerships; Waste Management; Building Control and cemeteries.  Alongside the delivery of these core services, the Council will deliver additional services that support and enhance the wellbeing of ratepayers including leisure and recreation, theatres and tourist facilities, as well as a range of community and business support initiatives.

In addition, the Council will take forward an ambitious capital investment programme to improve local infrastructure with £10.1m earmarked – subject to receipt of £2m external funding and other financing arrangements – to invest in a number of local projects.  These projects, designed to improve the attractiveness of the district as a place to live, visit, work and invest, include upgrades to various recycling centres and play parks across the district, the redevelopment of Fermanagh Lakeland Forum and the Ardhowen Theatre, Village and town centre Regeneration Schemes across the District, and the continued enhancement of Ecclesville Forest.

The first full Council meeting of the 2023-2024 Council term will take place in the Townhall, Enniskillen, on Tuesday 6 June 2023 at 7pm and will be live streamed on the Council YouTube channel at