An extended RTÉ News report on the blight of emigration.

Tommie Gorman speaks to young people forced to emigrate by unemployment and recession. With few or no prospects of finding work at home, they head overseas in search of a better future. However, many leave with no qualifications, no money, no job and nowhere to live relying on the kindness of friends or relatives to help them get set up.

I hope to be able to get back here for Christmas for a holiday but otherwise I don't think I will be back here for anything else.

Official Census figures show that in the year up to April 31,000 people emigrated from Ireland.

What began at the start of the 80s as the amble of a few is now the march of many, and so far no one has shown the inclination to shout stop.

Emigration peaked in the late 1950s with over 42,000 leaving each year. Journalist John Healy chronicled the exodus from his native Charlestown County Mayo in a series of Irish TImes articles. John Healy is seeing the effect of emigration on his own children. He recently returned from visiting his son in Australia and can see the attraction for many of moving to a place with a better standard of living and quality of life.

At the US Embassy in Ballbridge, Dublin there are queues of young people seeking work permits and holiday visas. Joan Smyth an official at the embassy describes the increase they are seeing in visa applications.

Andy Redigan a teacher in County Leitrim talks how a lack of employment, poor future prospects and high taxation are driving people to emigrate.

Tommy Kilcoyne Secretary of Sligo GAA describes the impact emigration is having on clubs throughout the county. Joseph O'Grady runs a recruitment agency and believes there is a need for a short term emigration plan that could be used to gain work experience.

In the meantime thousands continue to leave Ireland through Shannon Airport.

An RTÉ News broadcast 9 October 1986. The reporter is Tommie Gorman.