In 1999, SMART received a Millennium Recognition Award in recognition of the contribution made to the economic, social and cultural development of Ireland and to provide funding for projects that would have a lasting and beneficial impact into the 21st Century. SMART received IR£10,000 to floodlight the monastic ruins. The work was carried out by the ESB, a local contractor and volunteers under the supervision of an archaeologist.
On New Year’s Eve the celebration began at dusk at the Blessed Well, where Rev Fr. Eddie Aughney planted an oak tree sapling which was one of the many distributed in the Diocese of Kildare and Leighlin.
A procession took place to the monastic ruins where a religious ceremony, “Lighting the way Forward”, took place. The theme was Earth, Water and Light – elements essential for survival. Souvenir booklets were produced by SMART.
The floodlights were officially switched on by Bridie Lawlor and were followed by a fireworks display. At midnight the old monastic bell in Temple Mór was rung to welcome in the new millennium.