Despite the economic difficulties holiday makers are offered a wide range of activities with a stay in Irish homes at a competitive rate.
Founded in 1972, the Town and Country Homes Association offers holidaymakers more than 500 homes to choose from around the country. Chairperson of the Town and Country Homes Association Angela Muckley of Bantry in County Cork believes,
Town and Country Homes holidays are absolutely fantastic. They have everything.
Visitors from all over the world are guaranteed,
Good value, high standards of accommodation and the personal service.
Some of the holidays available include a stay in a historic home in Shrule, County Mayo where the owner offers guests a fascinating insight into the archaeological sites in the locality. The Flaherty family in Oughterard, County Galway provide guests with boating trips on Lough Corrib where they can fish for trout. Meanwhile in Renville on the shores of Galway Bay, guests can partake in a yoga holiday.
Town and Country Homes Association National Joint Secretary Mary McLoughlin believes the key to the success lies not only in the ability to provide a great value holiday during a recession, but also because the visitor is warmly welcomed and given an opportunity to partake in Irish family life.
Many Americans come here looking for their ancestors and an extraordinary thing is that sometimes you can be talking to some people and you would even know the people they would be looking for.
An aggressive marketing programme is in place to deal with problems such as spiralling taxes, French currency restrictions and the growth of unregistered accommodation. However with the continuing hard work of the homeowners and the good value they have to offer Mary McLoughlin is in no doubt the Association will go from strength to strength.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 18 April 1983. The reporter is Jim Fahy.