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22nd Sep 2022

Charlie Bird to be granted the Freedom of Wicklow with special ceremony planned

Emily Mullen

He is being recognised for raising awareness about Motor neurone disease.

Broadcaster Charlie Bird is set to be awarded the Freedom of Wicklow by the Wicklow County Council next week.

As BreakingNews reports, Charlie is receiving the honour in recognition of his fundraising and awareness campaign for Motor neurone disease (MND).

Charlie was diagnosed with the degenerative condition in October 2021. Since then, he has been using his platform to share insights into living with MND. He has also been raising money for the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association and Pieta House.

In April of this year, thousands of people joined the broadcaster for his Climb With Charlie campaign, which raised over €3.25 million. Charlie climbed Croagh Patrick to mark the occasion and was joined by a number of famous faces including Ryan Tubridy and Daniel O’Donnell.

Shortly after the climb, Charlie thanked those for taking part, saying: “I keep repeating this – people tell me I’m inspirational, but I say it was the people who went out walking and climbing that were the real inspirations.

“What was so beautiful was the community spirit on the day. Strangers fell into step with each other and walked and chatted together.”

He added: “It turned into a bit of a session, which had never been planned!”

A photo-book documenting the experience was released in the months following Climb with Charlie.

More recently, Charlie publicly expressed his gratitude to the strangers who offered him comfort after crying while out shopping Dunnes Stores.

In a post on Twitter, he wrote: “This is a difficult tweet for me to send, but I want to thank the two ladies who comforted me in Dunnes Stores in Cornelscourt this afternoon.

“I was having one of my awful crying moments, which is a symptom of my MND. The hand of friendship helped me so much.”

Header image: Michael Mc Laughlin/Photo: this article originally appeared on 

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