An Irish Navvy: The Diary of an Exile (Revised edition)
By: Donall MacAmhlaigh (author)Paperback
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Irish construction workers in post-war Britain are celebrated in song and story. Donall MacAmhlaigh kept a diary as he worked the sites, danced in Irish halls, drank in Irish pubs and lived the life of the roving Irish navvy. Work was hard, dirty and dangerous, followed by pints in the Admiral Rodney, the Shamrock, the Cattle Market Tavern and others. Living conditions were basic at best. This vivid picture of an Irish navvy's life in England in the 1950s mirrors that of an entire generation who left Ireland without education or hope. Days without food or work, the hardships of work camps, lonesome partings after trips home, periods of intense isolation and bitter reflection were all part of the experience.
Donall MacAmhlaigh from Galway moved with his family to Kilkenny when aged fourteen. Later he joined the army but left in 1951 and emigrated to England. By choice he settled in Northampton, married, had children and wielded the pick and shovel all his working life. He died in 1989.
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- ID: 9781848891883
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