Ar Bhóithrín Na Smaointe Features Thurles Town

Renowned Poet and member of Aosdána, Teo Dorgan , sets off on a journey down memory lane, on road he’s travelled many times before, from his home town of Cork to Dublin.  Now the N8 has changed and improved a lot in the last 30 years. However, instead of towns, all we see are bypasses that are the legacy of the Celtic Tiger era.

Cork Poet  Theo DorganTheo visits these towns now once again, taking the same routes he did fadó (long ago) on Bus Éireann. This week Theo stops in The Horse and Jockey, Thurles Co. Tipperary. It was always a halfway station to stop off and get a bit of grub and you on the way to a match, in the mecca of hurling, over the road in Thurles. Theo learns more about the founding of the GAA, in the place it all started, in the Haye’s Hotel. He also visits the famous Holycross Abbey, the St Mary’s Famine Museum and yes he does remember the Trip to Tipp.

Ar Bhóithrín na Smaointe‘ is an eight part series which airs each Wednesday at 7.30 on TG4 and this week (03/02/10) will feature the Tipperary Towns of Horse and Jockey, Holycross and our own Thurles Town.
This show is a must for anyone who travelled down this road over the years, as it features film archive of the area going back some 30 years or more.
The show is produced and directed by Brighid Breathnach on behalf of Independent Pictures for RTE for TG4.
Amongst those taking part in this programme, is retired Monsignor Maurice Dooley DD, former professor of Canon Law at St. Patrick’s College,Thurles and former parish priest of Loughmore, Thurles, Co.Tipperary.

Theo Dorgan is originally from Blackpool in Cork City, he is a poet, prose writer, editor, translator and member of Ireland’s most exclusive Arts Club, An Aosdána.
Over the past 25 years he has presented innumerable books and poetry programmes on RTÉ Radio 1, as well as the long-running interview series ‘The Inbisible Thread’ for Lyric FM. He was presenter on RTE 1’s books programme ‘Imprint’, and he wrote the scripts for and presented the RTÉ/BBC series ‘Hidden Treasures’, like ‘Imprint’ a Loopline Films production.

His more recent book, ‘Sailing For Home’ has been praised by Nobel laureate Doris Lessing as “a book for everyone.”

Dorgan’s next collection of poems, ‘Greek‘, will be published on 1st February next, and his prose account of a journey under sail from Cape Horn to Cape Town, ‘Time On the Ocean‘, will be published next October.

Reflecting on the ‘Ar Bhóithrín na Smaointe’ Tg4 series to, Theo stated:-

“There is an unexpected advantage to be gained from the transformation of the Cork-Dublin road into a motorway: the traveller who turns off to explore the bypassed towns will find that life has resumed a civilised pace there. For the most part he or she will also find a distinct improvement in the quality of life in these vibrant towns. Much remains the same, of course, but as is the case with the development of St Mary’s Famine Museum, we do seem to have got a little better at preserving what is left of our heritage. There is a new sense of pride and enterprise about each town we visited, a sense, perhaps, that the past remains the past but the future is there to be made in whatever image we wish. I found also, it must be said, a profound unease about the implications of the present economic debacle — so many people we spoke to, expressed fears that what has been hard fought for, especially in terms of employment and civic life, may soon be lost again, if a new generation is forced into unemployment and foreign exile.”

This show is a must for Tipperary viewers, so get the kettle on early and switch to TG4 next Wednesday  – Time 7.30 pm.

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