About RTÉ Television
LéargasRTÉ One, Monday, 7.30pm

Mrs Gallagher

The last of this excellent Léargas series looking at people's relationship with the land. In this episode battle lines are drawn between two sets of houses. From Achill Island to Portlaoise, disputes between neighbours escalate to such mammoth proportions that two pensioners find themselves serving time in Mountjoy.

This is a story of how seemingly innocuous disputes end up creating deep divisions and bad blood that lingers long beyond the apparent resolutions imposed by the courts.

In Achill Island, the the fight gets dirty when one family with a B&B accuse their neighbour of throwing 'shovel-fulls' of dog dirt onto their drive. Despite the Gardai's best efforts to stake out the premises, no evidence is found to prove their neighbour, Mrs Gallagher, did the dirty deed. This is the last of a number of complaints made by the owners of the B&B which has seen them object to the building of an extension, the crowing of a pet rooster, noise pollution, and the cutting down of a rhododendron boundary hedge. Eight years of legal action landed their neighbour, Mrs Gallagher, in Mountjoy on two separate occasions.

Jimmy Dunne plugged the gap between the end of a wall and the road at his property in Ballybrittas, Portlaoise, with a wooden fence. Despite covering the fence with climbing roses, his neighbour objected. The Planning Office moved in, and Jimmy ended up moving out to Mountjoy. Standing by his principals and his unshakable opinion that he was in the right prevented him from paying accumulated fines following his release and Jimmy was sent back to prison.