As we reflect on the two years of planning and activities since our first public meeting in May 2015, we can see how the first part of the programme of commemoration has set the scene. The general perception is one of pride and satisfaction. We did it well - they say; people seem almost surprised at the success of it all at national and local level. There have been achievements and national awards, websites and social media campaigns, and yet the barometer of success was most obvious in the simplest of things. We were moved as flags were unfurled, children sang the nation’s anthem in their schoolyards and the Proclamation was re-discovered by the next generation. It has been an eventful time, a period of great adventures and new discoveries. We engaged with all the people of the county to deliver the best possible programme, and to ensure it was and continues to be, inclusive, appropriate and sensitive. The process continues and will allow all sections of the community to respond and put forward their ideas, hopes and plans over the coming years. There is an opportunity for everyone in County Kildare to commemorate the events of the Decade of Centenaries and to engage in developing even more ambitious programmes for the future. Kildare County Council remains committed to developing a strategy of commemoration and coordinating events in line with the national programme 2013-2023. But for now, let us be humbled and thankful at the response and the engagement that we witnessed in 2016. Having heard our citizens’ memories of their part in the celebrations of 1966, our greatest wish might be that our children would speak of their memories of 2016 with the same conviction and pride in fifty years’ time. Cllr. Pádraig McEvoy Message from Cllr. Pádraig McEvoy, Chair of the County Kildare Decade of Commemorations Committee 5