T is for Tallaght and U is for Unknown


T should be for tardiness cos I’ve fallen behind in my A to Z Challenge, but today T is actually for Tallaght. My beloved home town 🙂

Tallaght has had a bad rap over the years, but I for one am proud to have been born and bred there. I was brought up in St. Maelruan’s Park, went to primary school in Our Lady of Loreto GNS (as it was then), and went to secondary school in Old Bawn Community School. I lived in Tallaght until I was 27. I worked in Dublin city centre while I was hairdressing and then worked locally in Xtra Vision on the Greenhills Road and then for The Echo Newspaper before moving to the UK in 1999. But my heart never left Tallaght.

I remember being sent to Reilly’s butchers for chops and I was to tell the butcher they had to be nice ones. (Never knew what that meant). I have a vague recollection of buying a lucky bag in Riordan’s shop in the village, but the shop I remember best is Conlon’s – officially known as The Lilac Centre 🙂 I spent a lot of time walking around the old Tallaght Town Centre. I bought my first record, ‘Hold Me Now’ by the Thompson Twins, in Radio Shack. And every so often, my brother sent me there for new needles for his record player. I bought my lipstick upstairs from the make-up stall and my cigarette (singular), with three matches and a corner of the matchbox from the kiosk. I would go shopping with my mam in H. Williams, until she changed to Dunnes Stores in Kilnamanagh, which was a long walk or a bus ride away if I was meeting her from work. Chips were bought from Borza or Macari’s the odd time, but mostly they were made at home from giant potatoes and cooked in, what would now be considered, a very dangerous deep fat fryer. Halloween costumes were often a black plastic bag and a plastic mask, and McKeowns were always the first to have their tree up for Christmas. I feel blessed to hail from such a place

The Tallaght Flag 🙂

U is for Unknown
an ode to Tallaght

If you have never been there, only heard about its faults
Took the slagging on the telly with more than a pinch o’ salt
If you’ve read the papers saying Tallaght’s just debris
Then you’ve never stopped to look and see the beauty I can see

The hills that wrap around it, like the arms of God himself
The river running through it, like a vein of purest health
The playing fields and football fields of Davis’s and Anne’s
The house where Newtown Rangers got its name, proudly still stands

The Sean Walsh Park, the Tymon Park, the Dodder Valley Park
Though some might try to ruin them, they are part of Tallaght’s heart
Shops and hotels, the Luas line, have made the place a hub
But even Shamrock Rovers, could not beat the Hell Fire Club

The Dragon and Ahernes, The Old Mill, that once was Bridget Burkes
Places for a pint, to wash away the strain of work
The Priory in the Village, St. Maelruan’s up the Road
It’s a place you can believe in, no matter what your Holy code

Can you only really love it, if it is where you are from?
Can you see past all the negative, if it’s not where you were born?
If you’ve never stood in Tallaght, thanking God that it’s your home
Then to you maybe this little town will always be unknown

2 thoughts on “T is for Tallaght and U is for Unknown

  1. I enjoyed this. The town where I grew up does not have a good reputation either. Last summer I probably visited it (passed through it in a car) for the last time. I have no close connections there any more.

  2. Gerard swift

    Oh my Annmarie how do you remember all those names. I also remember fondly buying a lucky bag in Ríordáins shop. Great memories. And getting the record tokens for my birthday. Men without hats was my first record from Radio Shack. Take care.

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