CHRISTY LENDS A HAND AS FERMOY FEATURES ON TG4 HISTORY PROGRAMME
Fermoy is to feature on a new show documenting the towns that have been by-passed by new motorways in recent years. Noted local geographer, Christy Roche, acted as a guide for the TG4 show, and Christy admitted that his ‘cupla focail’ came in handy as he documented the history of the local monastery and barracks for the television cameras.
Christy this week told The Avondhu that he was unsure what would make the final cut for the show, due sometime next month.
“I’m not exactly a historian, I suppose, I am a geographer. I know the area well,” he explained, “that’s why they came to me. I know about the boundaries, the old roads and the old divisions; the parish lines, the medieval divisions. I’m familiar with all that and the topography of the area.”
Christy has a long held interest in the development of local lands, writing and editing a number of books on areas like Ballyhooly, Grange and Fermoy.
“I did a degree in Geography in UCC, and I have a big interest in the local people and places; the difference between places and the changes through the years. I like looking at the development of houses, where they declined and the reasons why. For example, Fermoy was the biggest town in Cork in 1861, that is no longer the case.”
Bearing his interest in mind, what changes does Christy see in the local landscape after the now long-gone housing boom?
“It has changed things very much in that up to 10 years ago villages were looking for houses, to come in, but then from about 2 years ago they didn’t want more houses. Very poor planning saw houses built without amenities, and everyone was expecting voluntary groups to bring these amenities to the areas, it was all left up to local volunteers.
“Rathcormac, Watergrasshill; those places mushroomed with no consideration given to facilities for young people,” Christy explained. See future issues of The Avondhu for further details of when the geography of Fermoy is to feature on TG4.
Thursday 20th August 7:21pm