Tallaght once a village on the outskirts of Dublin is growing rapidly but the amenities and infrastructure are not developing at the same pace.
In the eighth century, Máel Ruain founded a Christian monastery founded at a site called Tallaght. Before that, a prehistoric settlement was at the same site.
In 1950, 350 people lived in the village of Tallaght. The population increased to 3,000 in the mid 1960s and 40,000 in mid 70s. This figure inspected to rise to 120,000 in the 1980s.
The majority of people moving to Tallaght have chosen to live there and 90% of the houses are private dwellings. Within the housing estates in the various neighbourhoods that comprise Tallaght such as Old Bawn and Killnamanagh, each area has its own local characteristics and amenities.
The original plan for Tallaght looked very attractive when it was laid out for public viewing in 1971. According to the chairman of Tallaght Welfare Society Charlie O'Toole,
That particular plan looked, and was, a plan which would make an ideal town for Tallaght it was then described as a model town.
On paper, there were open spaces as well as room for shops, a swimming pool, library, health centre, schools and churches. However as Tallaght was essentially developed by private enterprise, too much housing was built before the essential infrastructure was in place.
Nobody wanted to open a shop before the people moved into the area. As a result, there is one large supermarket catering for the whole of Tallaght. While the swimming pool attached to the community school is available to the whole of Tallaght, recreational facilities are limited and the old village hall is closed.
There’s not a lot for the younger people, they’re could be a lot more for the younger people.
The only place offering a social life for the people of Tallaght is the Foxes Covert pub. This venue offers a choice of bars, a cabaret lounge and a space for parties and functions. Despite its obvious lack of amenities, everyone interviewed in the pub is happy living in Tallaght.
One woman sees Tallaght’s proximity to the mountains and the scenic Bohernabreena Reservoir as an advantage but,
Besides that, there’s not much else in Tallaght besides houses.
This episode of 'Seven Days' was broadcast on 3 October 1975. The reporter is John O’Donoghue.