February 1st, 2015


Sean Hannick, RIP – ‘a true champion of the west’


The west of Ireland has lost one of its true champions with the death after an illness of the chairperson of the Council for the West, Sean Hannick.

Mr Hannick (aged 71) passed away at the Galway Clinic on Friday last (January 30th) and his death leaves an enormous void in his family, his native and beloved Killala, and throughout the west of Ireland.

A well-known industrialist and businessman, he was a tireless advocate of local development and his list of achievements stands as testimony to the selflessness with which he set about trying to improve the lives of the people of this region. He was selected as Mayo Person of the Year in 1998.

“Where does one start with Sean?” said Most Rev. Christopher Jones, former Bishop of Elphin, Bishops’ Representative on  the Council for the West. “At every level, in every role he held, he made an enormous difference.

“He brought employment to Killala. He employed people in Killala himself. He was the driving force behind the development of the Killala Community Centre.

“He fought for improved facilities and infrastructure in north Mayo, and then he broadened his campaigns to all of Co. Mayo and to the west of Ireland in general. To Sean, the emphasis was always on progress and improvement – it would be impossible to list all of the many worthwhile issues and campaigns he supported down through the years.

“Many people have reason to be very grateful to Sean for all he did, directly or indirectly. But he was never one to seek the limelight or to chase accolades: Sean was a quiet, humble man, a great friend to all of us in Council for the West and someone we will miss greatly. He was a true champion of the west.

“He played leading roles in our campaigns to establish the Western Development Commission and to obtain Objective One status for the west. He was a magnificent leader. He was one of the finest people I have ever worked with – he often left our meetings late in the evening and drove to Dublin that night for meetings with Government officials the next morning. I wondered where he got the time and energy.

“In an age of bonuses and expenses, it is important to note that wherever Sean travelled to promote the west – and he travelled north, south, east and west – he did so at his own expenses for the betterment of society.

“As a chairman, he was very balanced and democratic. He gave everyone an opportunity to express their opinion, and he was a great husband and father to his children and I know his family will miss him so much.”

Mr Hannick, a member of the Council for the West since its formation in 1994, became the organisation’s chairman in 2002. 

He was a member of the National Council of ISME (Irish Small and Medium Enterprises) and the Western Development Leader Company, and served for two terms on the Western Development Commission board. He was treasurer of Killala Community Council and a member of many other community development organisations, including extensive involvement in Killala GAA club.

He is survived by his wife Deirdre;  sons John, Rory, Conor and Marcus; grandchildren Sarianna, Farayah, and twins Órna and Séan; daughters-in-law Neasa, Caroline and Yolanda; sister-in-law Margaret; brother-in-law Pat;  relatives, neighbours and friends.

Funeral arrangements are as follows: reposing at Lynn’s Funeral Home this Monday from 5pm, followed by removal to St Patrick’s Church, Killala.  Funeral mass at 12 noon on Tuesday with burial immediately afterwards in Killala Cemetery.





Contact Points:

                                          Most. Rev. Bishop Christopher Jones: 087 795 9975


Administrator:                  Caroline Wilson, Tel: 096 32975 / 086289 9296 / email: cftwest@iol.ie



The Council for the West is a voluntary, independent, non-political body which monitors and reports on the socio-economic state of the West and acts as a lobby group promoting the development of the West. The Council for the West was set up by the Western Bishops and has successfully campaigned for retention of Objective 1 Status for the region.  It continues to campaign for balanced regional development and highlights issues of major concern for the region.


Council for the West, Killala Business Park, Killala, Co. Mayo.  Tel: 096 32975,  Fax: 096 32014, E-mail: cftwest@iol.ie

Web: www.councilforthewest.ie Charitable Status No.: CHY 10724, Developing the West Together Limited Registered No.: 197197


Members: Chairman: Sean Hannick, Vice-Chairman: Declan O’Callaghan Treasurer: Ray O’Donoghue Secretary: Michael McGarrigle PRO: Liam Horan, Neville Bagnall, John Connolly, Micheal Frain, Most Rev. Bishop John Fleming, Mike Hogan, Most Rev. Bishop Christy Jones, Diarmaid Mulcahy, Seamus Rodgers, Sean Sweeney.     Co-ordinator: Caroline Wilson

Patrons: Most Rev. Bishop Philip Boyce, Most Rev. Bishop Kevin Doran, Most Rev. Bishop Martin Drennan, Most Rev. Most Rev. Bishop John Fleming, Most Rev. Bishop John Kirby, Most Rev. Archbishop Michael Neary, Most Rev. Bishop Colm O’Reilly, Most Rev. Bishop Leo O’Reilly, Most Rev. Bishop Kieran O'Reilly, Right Rev. Patrick Rooke