Hard labour and a hard Border
Sir, – Part of the rhetoric in advance of Brexit negotiations is the reference to the agreement since 1922 to free movement between Ireland and the UK and Northern Ireland. John FitzGerald qualified this in his article on patterns of Anglo-Irish migration (“Will Brexit break old patterns of Anglo-Irish migration?”, Business Opinion, May 12th) when he referred to restrictions during the second World War. The Derry Journal on July 14th, 1944, reported how two Donegal men were each fined 10 shillings and imprisoned for one month with hard labour for not having residence permits and failing to report changes in address while working at a quarry in Co Antrim. A policeman gave evidence that the permit in the case of one of the men, from Killybegs, had expired at the end of the previous December.
Up to the early 1970s there was only one “approved” crossing over the Border from Donegal along the 50 miles between Pettigo and Lifford. – Yours, etc,