24 Things You'll Remember If You Went On Holidays To Wexford As A Child In The 90s

Pirates Cove, anyone? Or maybe the Orphan Girl disco...


Before the Celtic Tiger gave us all fierce notions about ourselves, and we started travelling around the world on yachts and stuff, you couldn't beat a trip two counties south to live in a sophisticated tin can for a few months every summer.

For those of us who did – and those of us who still do – we occupied a world that outsiders and our 'friends from home' will quite simply never understand. So, we've pulled together some of those memories that will make you yearn for a trip to the Sunny South East...

1. The Orphan Girl disco

And the bit where they did the Saturday Night dance.


2. Going to the shop and buying more sweets in a day than you’d now eat in a year...


3. ...then burning it all off by playing an eight-hour football match

"I'm Steve Staunton!"

"NO I AM!"


4. Being allowed watch telly cos it was raining

And only when it was raining.


5. Always wanting to go to the mobile of your mate who had a VCR

Or if you really hit the jackpot... a Nintendo.

Wikipedia SNES PAL

6. The smell of hot tarmac after a summer shower

Oh yes.


7. Having to sometimes settle for board games

It didn't matter if you'd already gone through every last question in this Junior Blockbusters game. The internet hasn't been invented yet, so you'll damn well do it again.


8. Getting a hole-in-one in Pirates Cove and thinking you were Tiger Woods

Because you were, dammit.


9. Shoe-kicking contests off swings

Since the laws of physics hadn't quite reached Wexford by the 1990s, shoe-kicking contests were a fantastic way to make the most of the fact that the county's swings were unperturbed by forces of gravity.

The rules were simple: swing as high and as fast as possible, then kick your shoes off as hard and as far as possible. Worry about wet socks later.


10. Being allowed stay up until 11 because you were old and responsible

Get that night sky into ya.


11. The ructions caused when your family had visitors



12. The ructions caused when someone’s friend 'from back home' came to visit

Or, indeed, when your friend from home came to visit.

The painful politics of youth kicked into action – and there was always a loser in the situation.


13. The general DRAMA of it all

Dozens of kids and young teenagers running a little micro-society of their own, all fancying one another but afraid to say it directly to one another's faces, so instead passing on the messages via a complex series of intermediaries, each of whom had their own vested interests?

Sure what could possibly go wrong there?

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14. Bodyboarding

And not just in the sea. On dunes, hills, decks... pretty much anything with a downward slope.

It's a good thing mobile homes didn't have stairs.


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15. The queue for the local payphone

Because it's been 12 hours and your girlfriend of a week 'from home' isn't going to hang around, y'know.


16. Knowing that the best beach in Ballymoney is actually the one around the side of the hill

Pro tips.


17. Insisting to your friends back home that it’s a ‘mobile home’ and not a ‘caravan’


(Well it is, but it's much more like the posh one they accidentally go into with the naked couple.)


18. Waiting for the barbecue to be over so you could start grilling marshmallows

Who needs meat anyway?


19. Building the most epic sandcastles of all time because you had nothing else to do

What do you mean I look older than 11 in this photo? Shut up.


20. Speaking about the ‘other’ local mobile parks with venom and hatred

Prospect Park. Think they're so great with their pool and their fancy gate. Well, if they come 'round these parts, you know what we're gonna do lads? We're going to give them the glaring of a lifetime!

As for Tara Glen... DON'T GET ME STARTED.


21. And thinking the people who had houses had fierce notions

Oh, you think you're so great just because you live in a structure that can't be burgled using a tin-opener, eh?


22. Mobile phones radically altering the dynamic of your group

Because it wasn't complicated enough already, before your friend 'from Wexford' started flirting with your friend 'from home' by text.


23. Waking up every morning, and having a full day of absolutely nothing ahead of you… in a way that you’ve never felt since, and will probably never feel again

Frosties... or Coco Pops?

Frosties... or Coco Pops?

Frosties... or Coco Pops?


24. And heading off at the end of the summer, knowing that somewhere out there was a great bunch of friends that you’d forget about soon… only to graciously rediscover in a few months’ time

And we didn't even need Facebook.


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Written By

Aidan Coughlan