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Pat Lloyd

Interviewed by Aisling Lane / Photos by Emma O’Brien.

Aisling: How long have you lived in the area?
Pat: 35 years (I grew up in the area then emigrated to England).

Aisling: What’s a fond memory you have of living here?
Pat: I enjoyed playing outside in the street. There were no cars then and we used to ride our bikes up and down the road. I was good at and loved times tables at school. I had to leave school at 14 to go work in England as I was 1 of 11 siblings and we needed money.

Aisling: Have you seen this community come back from hard times before?
Pat: Asian flu- an influenza pandemic in 1957 spread to Ireland. Lots of people got sick. This pandemic didn’t have as high a death toll as Covid-19, but it spread to many children in the area. Eventually a vaccine was produced and the illness stopped spreading.

Aisling: What are some things that have helped you through lockdown and what brings you joy?
Pat: I enjoy tending to my garden, and I also doing some DIY and building and arts-and-crafts. I worked as a builder and a tradesperson in London, so I am good at construction. I have made things out of clay and wood before. This passed time in lockdown.

Aisling: What does community mean to you? What sort of things are you doing now to stay connected to your community and family?
Pat: I recently got a smartphone that I can use to call my family. It’s funny- when someone lives just a few miles away from you (like my brother) you contact them less than if they lived far away, like in Australia or Canada. I go to the daycare centre to meet people.

Aisling: What message do you want to share for yourself and this community in 10 years time?
Pat: Good sense of humour- very important! Positive the whole time- no matter what. Forgive your worst enemy, because you will suffer- not them! Value your family, wherever they live.

Pictured below is Aisling’s creative response to her interview with Pat- a lovely handcrafted owl.

Pat Lloyd