Joe Mahon visits Muckish Mountain

Published Thursday, 07 August 2014
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Lesser Spotted Ulster's Joe Mahon visits Muckish Mountain in Co Donegal on Friday where the discovery of a broken millstone poses a local mystery.

Joe Mahon visits Muckish Mountain
Joe chats to Manus McFadden on Muckish mountain. (© UTV)

Joe is told about the urban myth involving St Colmcille and the millstone but reveals that the more rational explanation can be attributed to local men who climbed Muckish Mountain every day to quarry silica in the 1940s.

Joe learns more about the major quarrying industry which centred on Muckish during the Second World War when the mountain's most valuable asset was exploited. However, as Joe soon discovers, the dangerous conditions the workers faced often made it difficult to acquire the coveted resource.

Despite the fact electricity was virtually non-existent until 1969; life in the townlands around Muckish was an overall positive experience. While Joe is regaled with tales of happy memories among the practically self-sufficient community, he is taught how to light a goose-necked Tilly lamp which was used during the long winter nights.

The presenter is also taught the art of cutting corn with a scythe at an annual event made famous by a Percy French song, before being rewarded for his efforts with some scone bread made over an open hearth.

Lesser Spotted Ulster is on Friday 8 August at 8pm on UTV.

Viewers can join in the conversation by tweeting along with @utv during the show using the hashtag #LesserSpotted.

© UTV News
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