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Preserve Irish history by recording names of fields

As grassland management becomes a feature on many farms, farmers are beginning to record paddocks and fields in numerical order. As a result, farms are now often listed as paddocks 1-10 and some of the older, historical field names are being consigned to history.

As Virginia Show's Kathleen Duffy explains, there is a danger that some or all of the old names could be lost forever unless they are recorded.

"Almost every farm has a well field and there's always the house field," she says. "But there are some very old and unusual names on fields too."

Kathleen's own farm has the 'cauldra' field, which is believed to refer to a burial place for unbaptised babies and could even have its origins in pre-Christian times.

"We have a field called the 'brandra', but I don't now what that means," she adds.

Another field, known as the 'pound garden', is believed to have been where a farmer's cattle were impounded during times of trouble.

At the Virginia Show this week, two ladies -- Bridie Costello and Alice McDonnell -- will be asking farmers and others with field names to record them and the stories behind them.

People are also being urged to record the details of fields where the owner may have died and there is no one left to pass on the names or stories.

Bridie and Alice will be on hand to record all these historical details in a dedicated area beside the Community Forum stand.

Indo Farming