The National Ploughing Championships is back after a hiatus of two years due to the Covid pandemic. On the first day of the event, 91,500 people visited the 900 acre site in Ratheniska, Co. Laois and the National Museum of Ireland was there to meet them.
The three-day event is a great opportunity for the Museum to engage with rural Ireland and to share details of our own upcoming events and projects. A steady stream of interested and curious members of the public called in to talk to us at the Council of National Cultural Institutions (CNCI) stand in the Government of Ireland Village, Block 3, Row 19.
In many rural parts of Ireland, farming, fishing and aquaculture are practiced together to support families and communties. The aquaculture industry sustains 1,833 direct jobs in remote rural areas, with 80% of them in the west of Ireland. An added advantage from the industry is that every full-time job in aquaculture creates 2.27 other jobs locally.¹
Visitors to the CNCI stand were updated on the development of the traditional boat gallery at Turlough Park and those from a coastal, island or fishing background were happy to talk about their experiences and useful connections were made. The Museum will be present at the CNCI for the three days of the National Ploughing Championships.