Anna May McHugh: “In terms of interior design, I just like to keep it as nice as I can.” Photograph: James Flynn/APX

‘I live about four miles from the town of Athy in Co Laois. I live on a farm that my husband, John McHugh, bought in 1963 from an uncle of his.(...)

Revellers at Electric Picnic 2013 in Stradbally, Co Laois. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons / THE IRISH TIMES

If you awoke Celine Dion violently in the middle of the night while wearing a balaclava, making threatening demands that she leave the country with yo(...)

Taoiseach Enda Kenny visiting the National Ploughing Championships at Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co Laois yesterday. Photograph: Alan Betson.

Scarcely 10 minutes at the ploughing and Enda Kenny had already put his foot in it. The photographers surged forward. “Lads, lads – keep away from the(...)

Bernie MacCarthy from  Kilbeggan, WestMeath, competing in the Farmerette Conventional Plough Class, at the National Ploughing Championships, at Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co. Laois. Photograph: Eric Luke

The National Ploughing Championships drew its largest ever crowd on a single day yesterday, with well over 90,000 people going through the turnstiles (...)

President Michael D Higgins with Brendan Greene of  Ratheniska at the National Ploughing Championships at Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co Laois. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

in RatheniskaHelping young farmers to access land is the greatest challenge facing modern agriculture, President Michael D Higgins said at the opening(...)

 John Kirby from  Clonakilty, Co. Cork, and Shane McHugh from Co  Leitrim, prepare livestock for display at the National Ploughing Championships, at Ratheniska , Stradbally, Co. Laois. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

All roads are leading to Stradbally today where President Michael D Higgins opened the 82nd National Ploughing Championships at Ratheniska, outside th(...)

The Chinese are coming. So are the New Zealanders, the British and many more international visitors. The 82nd National Ploughing Championships open th(...)

Mickey, Cormac and Cathal Mac Connell at the funeral of their brother, Seán Mac Connell, at the Church of the Divine Word, Rathfarnham. Photograph: Frank Miller

The funeral took place in Dublin yesterday of former Agricultural Correspondent of The Irish Times Seán Mac ConnellHis death earlier in the week at th(...)

Journalist Seán Mac Connell, who died yesterday morning aged 66. Kevin O’Sullivan, editor of The Irish Times, described him as “an outstanding journalist of his generation” and he said he was known in every corner of Ireland. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Politicians, farming figures and former media colleagues have paid warm tributes to former Irish Times agriculture correspondent Seán Mac Connell, who(...)

Jim Stanley looks on as Lydia Turley gives a kiss to his champion heifer at the launch of the National Ploughing Championships on the site in Ratheniska, Co Laois, yesterday. Photograph: Jeff Harvey/HR Photo

It’s always an anxious time when visitors are coming but what do you do when more than 180,000 people are due to invade your farm in three weeks? The (...)