Dublin and gentrification


Sir, – Una Mullally mangles her metaphors in warning that, “The canaries in the coal mine have been screeching for some time”, to highlight the decay of Dublin’s character (Opinion & Analysis, September 16th).

Screeching canaries indicate a healthy atmosphere. They don’t give advance notice of problems. The only warning they can give is to drop dead.

The controversial Scottish scientist John Scott Haldane first suggested using sentinel canaries in mines to detect odourless gases after experimenting on himself and his own children to the point of unconsciouness – to avoid using animals.

He is credited with the introduction of the gas mask, the space suit, the decompression chamber and oxygen therapy. – Yours, etc,





Sir, – If Una Mullally thinks Dublin is in a dreadful state and getting worse, she should have seen the place in the 1970s . Dublin then was a dismal, damp, depressing dump with low wages and high unemployment. Things were so bad in terms of food that one of the highlights of my student days was the opening of McDonald’s in Grafton Street on May 9th, 1977. So cheer up, Una. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 13.