Pettigo (Irish: Poiteag?/I>) is a small picturesque village on the border of County Donegal and County Fermanagh. It is bisected by the Termon River which forms the border between Donegal in the Republic of Ireland and Fermanagh in Northern Ireland. The portion of the village in Northern Ireland is officially called Tullyhommon, but is locally known as 'High Street' due to its hillside position overlooking the remainder of the village.
Scene: town view
Date: 1920 (estimate)
10' x 8' printed on quality photo paper
Also available mounted & framed, ask for details
Colour images can be printed in black& white if preferred.
Read aboutPettigo below
Once a thriving market village on the Great Northern railway line, the village suffered from the demise of the railway in the 1950s and from the closure of numerous cross-border roads during the height of the Troubles in Northern Ireland. The latter had the effect of cutting Pettigo off from much of its rural hinterland in counties Fermanagh and Tyrone.
Agriculture, particularly the rearing of sheep and cattle, forms the mainstay of the local economy. The quality of the local land (marshy, with much blanket bog) renders it largely unsuitable for grain crops.
There are also expansive forestry plantations in the surrounding townlands, owned and operated by Coillte Teoranta, the Irish Forestry Service. Many of the plantations occupy land unsuitable for other commercial uses, or where peat extraction has been completed, leaving poor quality thin soil cover behind. The Sitka Spruce and Lodgepole Pine softwood vaieties comprise 90 of the canopy.
In recent years economic prospects have improved with the reopening of many of the cross-border roads, improving access for tourists and locals alike.
Pettigo has traditionally been the 'gateway' to St. Patrick's Purgatory, a Christian pilgrimage site, situated on an island in Lough Derg. During the mid-late 20th century, the popularity of the pilgrimage brought a significant boost to the local economy as tens of thousands of pilgrims from all over Ireland and from further afield traveled through the village on their way to and from Lough Derg. Although the popularity of the pilgrimage has dwindled in recent years, it is still an important driver of tourism in the area.
Political and religious landscape
In June 1922, at the tail end of the Irish War of Independence, Pettigo was occupied by an Republican Army unit from across the border in the Irish Free State. A battalion of British Army troops had to be used to dislodge them. In the ensuing fighting, in which the British bombarded the village and then stormed it, the IRA lost seven men killed, six wounded and four captured before being forced to retreat. One British soldier was also killed in the fighting.
Although relatively unscathed by the Troubles conflict (1969-1998) compared with many border towns and villages, Pettigo did suffer from a number of bomb attacks during the 1970s such as the bomb at Brittons of the Cross in 1972 along with the explosions at the bridge at Mullinagoad when closing the borders. There was also a failed Republican Army bomb attack on a Boy's Brigade parade on the 8th November 1987 in the Fermanagh side of the village. - the same day as the Enniskillen Remembrance Day Bombing. Fortunately the bomb failed to detonate and no lives were lost. The local area has a mixed religious make-up, with the village containing Roman Catholic, Church of Ireland, Presbyterian and Methodist Churches.
The village school is the Roman Catholic St. Mary's.