In this weeks Across the Water, Martin Grant talks to Anthony Dooley, originally from Dundalk, now living in Isle of Man, UK.
Born in Market Street in the Old Firemen’s Shed in 1965. But I look much younger!
Parents names and names of family?
Bertie Dooley and Gretta Morgan . I have eight brothers - Leo, Charlie, Robbie,Danny,Seamus,Michael,Gerard and Francis. I have four sisters - Mary, Gina, Connie and Bernie.
When did you leave and why?
I lived in Culloville before moving to the Isle of Man in 1977 after our father passed away. Our mother took us to join my sister Mary and brother Charlie who were both living on the island. It was to start a new life and indeed a new way of life.
What’s your occupation?
I’m a butcher by trade. I started in 1979 as a Saturday morning boy when I was 14.
What’s the biggest difference in settling into your new home?
Originally going to a much bigger school and a much busier place than Culloville and making new friends. Although my brothers have always been my best friends. With my own children, it is a very good environment to raise a family with plenty of work, a low crime rate and plenty to see and do.
Is the social life much different from home?
Plenty of pubs and clubs and coming from a big close family there is always a family occasion of one sort or another.
How do you like to relax?
Football is my relaxation. I am heavily involved with St Mary’s Football Club where I am the club secretary and the second team manager. Most of the family support or are involved in the club. Sadly, there is only one GAA club on the island and they play their games in the north of England.
Have you been home since leaving and what changes have you noticed?
Yes, every July for the blessing of the graves at St Patrick’s Graveyard. My mum and dad are both buried there. Dundalk is a lot more multicultural, although I suppose I am a foreigner in the Isle of Man.
What’s the best and worst things about being away from home?
The best thing about the island is that most of my brothers and sisters and their family’s are here. The worst thing is that I don’t get to see my sister Gina, who still lives in Dundalk, often enough.
Name one thing from home that you wish you could buy in your local store?
White and red pudding, chef sauce and wheaten bread
Have you a message for your friends and family?
We really need to have a big reunion .....It would be great to get the whole clan together.