One of Ireland's biggest exports to Britain has traditionally been people, with Irish communities settling throughout the major urban centres, where they have found work and built lives for themselves.

Attracted by the bright lights of the city many young Irish people travel to London in search of work and opportunity. However, it is not to be for many emigrants who find the reality is much different to the dream. 'Tuesday Report' visits the down and outs in London's Skid Row.

These are the Irish we often forget. Those who end up ragged, drunk, depressed on a park bench or queueing for a cup of soup in a grimy backstreet hostel. Often unable to cope with social and domestic pressures they've taken to drink and drifted into the metropolitan sub-culture which the Amercans call 'Skid Row' - the world of the 'dosser', the 'down-and-out'. On official British forms they are the people of 'no fixed abode'.

Forbes McFall, RTÉ Guide 25 February 1977

In this excerpt from the programme Anton Wallich-Clifford, founder of Simon in Britain, describes the kind of people who end up on Skid Row and how the Irish make up a large number of them.

The greatest number of vagrant alcoholics generally are Scots and Irish.

Many young Irish emigrants are attracted by the glamour of places like the King's Road, an illusion of unlimited opportunity. 

The reality of London today is that without money and a job, it's a rude awakening for the young.

This episode of 'Tuesday Report' was broadcast on 1 March 1977.  The reporter is Forbes McFall.