For those of us old enough to remember, there was a time when local communities were real and vibrant. Neighbours knew each other’s names; children played all over the neighborhood and could be found in each other’s homes.
Teachers, magistrates and police officers, and of course the parish priest, were persons who were respected and had real influence. The church and the primary school were places where the community congregated.
Over the last 50 years, much of this has changed. First, there was television which shifted a lot of entertainment to inside the home. Then as secondary school opportunities expanded, children from one area would travel sometimes great distances to different secondary schools which were constructed from the 1970s, losing contact with their primary school classmates.