Tractor run to raise funds for early intervention autism unit

The annual Tom Kinsella memorial tractor run will take place in Co. Laois on December 26, St. Stephen’s Day. The event is organised to remember farmer and vintage enthusiast, the late Tom Kinsella who was an active member of Ballyroan Vintage Club.

The club is hosting the tractor run, with help from other enthusiasts from surrounding clubs. This year all funds will be donated to Naiscoil Kantara early intervention pre-school unit, Timahoe, which caters for children with autism from around the county.

The unit which is currently in temporary accommodation, caters for children aged three to five. It takes in 12 students annually – two classes of six.

Construction of a permanent building will start in the new year. The money raised will go towards equipping a sensory room in the unit.

Principal, Ann Bergin, said the school was delighted with the generosity of the club. “The funds raised will make a real difference in enhancing the everyday lives of these preschoolers,” she said.

The tractor run, which is open to all tractors, will leave Ballyroan GAA field at 11:30am and make its way to Timahoe and onwards to Spink. It will stop at Headen’s bar in Spink, for light refreshments, before continuing towards Ballyroan. Soup and sandwiches will be available.

There will be a draw later that night in Whelan’s lounge, Ballyroan, with music by Tim Chambers. All support for this worthy cause would be appreciated.

The 27th Ballyroan Vintage Rally took place in the village last May. Chaired by Dan Kinsella, the club has attracted a lot of young and female members in recent years.

Committee member, Pat Bowe, said that members have an array of agricultural equipment, going back to the 1930s.

“It’s a very sociable club, and we support what other clubs in the county, and around the country, are doing,” he said.