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If you stood on Henry Street with a big smile and asked a hundred Dubliners who it was named after, it’s unlikely you’d get a single correct answer. If you walked into a history tutorial in one of the city’s finest universities and asked the students who Westmoreland was, you’d definitely get a few blank stares. And what’s the significance of Nassau Street – does Dublin have a Caribbean connection to celebrate?
Is it unusual that Dubliners are so ambivalent about the origins of these street names and, in light of the recent passing of John Hume (surely a candidate to have a boulevard or a town square named in his honour) is it time to consider renaming some of them?
In this week’s episode, Darach and Peadar look behind the true meaning of some of Dublin’s well-known streets, the red tape associated with renaming and consider if the positive civic engagement that led to the Rosie Hackett and Mary Elmes bridges can be built upon and turned into a way of engaging citizens with history.
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