Young people from Monaghan discuss living near the border and dispel some mistaken beliefs about their county.

A panel of young people from County Monaghan are asked whether they consider themselves to be northerners or southerners.

Damien feels he has more in common with people in Northern Ireland than people in Dublin because,

Dublin is a separate entity on its own, apart from the rest of the county.

He thinks people in the Republic of Ireland presume he is from Northern Ireland because of his accent,

A lot of them wouldn't even know that Monaghan isn’t part of the six counties.

John reckons most people from the 26 counties have never been north of the border. Both he and Paddy are of the opinion that many people think what is on the news is happening in Monaghan. Paddy dispels this misconception,

Life in a small county town in Monaghan is just as quiet as a quiet day in Rathmines or Dublin 4.

Geraldine lives in Clontibret, County Monaghan. This village was invaded by Loyalists opposed to the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement. She points out this is a rare negative aspect of living close to the border.

A far greatest problem according to Geraldine is the amount of trade going across the border and the devastating effect it has on Monaghan towns such as Clones.

Francis point out the reverse is also true, as many people from Northern Ireland stay in Monaghan hotels at the weekends.

The panel see no divide between Protestant and Catholic communities in Monaghan. Everyone lives and socialises together harmoniously. According to John,

In Monaghan too you have one of the biggest mixed populations I think in the country and that could have a lot to do with it.

This episode of 'Facts of Life’ was broadcast on 27 May 1987. The presenter is Carolyn Fisher.