Bánú nó Slánú / Rural Decline Focus on Wednesday Night at 9.30pm on TG4.

Ballylongford farmer, Donal O’Connor – one of the last of the small farmers in his area of North Kerry. Photograph Courtesy of TG4.

This Wednesday night at 9:30pm TG4 will take a look at the blighting graph of rural decline on two areas on the western seaboard.

That graph could be just as easily laid down over any part of the new rural Ireland of today.

Its cold, harsh realities of closed shops, public houses and post offices – often one and the same, crumbling remains of old farmhouses, cottages and outbuildings that once teemed with live in a vibrant countryside.

Wheels of the World

In the 1973 documentary Wheels of the World its script writer, Con Houlihan touched on a theme quite similar to today’s considerably darker picture when he wrote: There’s a lonliness of a land where life has yet to come and there’s a loneliness where life teemed and has now ebbed…..

About Wednesday Night’s Programme

Tabú – Bánú Nó Slánú looks at the small town/village way of life that is dying a death in Ireland, as illustrated by a visit to once thriving towns in Kerry and Leitrim featured in this documentary on Rural Decline.

The focus is on the people who live in two Irish towns, Kiltyclogher in Leitrim and Ballylongford in North Kerry.

159 Post Offices Closed

This year 159 post offices announced their closures in Ireland. It is a further sign the very fabric of Rural Ireland has not improved since ‘The Crash’ while Dublin races forward.

This film tells the stories of the challenges faced by two rural areas of Ireland.

Against the Odds

These areas have battled against the odds to try and stop the rising tide of rural decline.

Once a prosperous agricultural hub, Ballylongford has seen its village lose vital industry in the last 30 years.

The mill, the creamery and many businesses have closed down. Now with their rural post office gone the community fear for the future of their village.

No New Children

In 2017 no new children started in the national school for the first time in living memory.

Local farmer Donal O Connor, now in his 70s, tells how his family are in the area for hundreds of years farming land outside the town.

No More Small Farmers

“Now I’m the last of the family. There are no small farmers anymore,” Donal told the programme makers.

The programme will also speak to representatives of the local GAA club in Ballylongford and the the now redundant postmistress who closed the post office in September.

Tune into: TG4 at 9:30pm on this Wednesday night for Bánú nó Slánú / Rural Decline.

Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald will address a meeting on local rural decline at the River Island Hotel on Saturday, November 24th See more with a click on the link here: http://www.mainevalleypost.com/2018/11/05/sinn-fein-leader-for-castleislands-probe-into-rural-revival

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