When I was young in 1960’s Rathmines was known as “Flatland”. There were many large houses on Leinster Square, on Leinster Road and Grosvenor Square where students would stay and many civil servants lived in low cost digs. Digs is the type of accommodation where a lodger stays in a family home and pays for lodgings as well as board. The food and the utility bills are included in the rent, so budgeting is not usually an issue.

An aunt of mine owned and lived alone in a large house on Leinster square which appears in a few of my photographs, it always smelled of town gas. At the other extreme I remember visiting a cousin who had a bedsit on Leinster Road and I was horrified. There was a common bathroom shared by ten female tenants [in terrible condition] with a notice saying "do not flush after 8pm" and another saying that visitors were not permitted after 9pm. My mother explained that as my cousin was a civil servant who went home to the country ever Friday she only stayed in the bedsit four nights ever week and therefore was not too concerned about the quality of the accommodation.

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