Well, there is no doubt that it was a social thing. Families and people from the villages would come together when there was a gathering for a fank. All the people from the village would go out and they would gather together and then were working together all day, people did things together. But that has changed, perhaps people are not as friendly as they were. They have a different employment during the day and they don’t see as much of each other. Another thing that is happening is that strangers are coming in and the economy means that there are no houses, young people are not able to buy houses and when a house goes on the market the people of the place are not able to compete with rich people from the south, and the houses go to strangers, Little by little the community is changing, there is no doubt about that. I think the social side of it is still there but it is not as strong as it was. When you go to a fank nowadays in my own village there might only be three or four people there at the most. I remember seeing a photo of that fank perhaps sixty years ago and there were thirty people there anyway, I’d say. That has changed a lot, it is not such a big social occasion as it was at one time.

  • James MacDonald (Tatties)
Saturday 13th September 2008