John McCullagh May 3, 2005
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My parents lived in a small two-up/two-down terrace house in Peter’s Place. It was not as it is today – mostly refurbished and surrounded by desirable residential properties. Then there was no bathroom and water was supplied by means of a water tap in the back yard. The terrace though did then back on to houses of the local ‘gentry’ which had huge back gardens. My aunts always referred to my mother’s house as the ‘Neuk’. 

Post-War the government initiated a house building programme. Newry Urban Council built larger modern council houses to meet the needs of large families living in accommodation such as that of my parents. 

In 1951 my mother and father became the proud tenants of 60 Dromalane Park. There was just one small hiccup – his name was John. My brother John, almost ten at the time had just spent a week in scout camp in Dublin. In those far-off days children were not consulted on family matters. No one had informed John that we were moving house. Home from Dublin he made his way to ‘The Neuk’ only to find strangers living there! 

 ‘Oh, yer Ma and Da have gone to live in Dromalane!’

the new occupant told him, pointing him in the right direction!


Poor John had no idea where Dromalane Park was. More by good luck than good management, he found himself wandering around a square filled with new houses. At this point Patsy happened to look out and saw him, wandering about forlornly, clutching his wee suitcase tied with cord. She went out and called him in. He dubbed himself The Home Alone Kid!

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