As fears grow regarding spiralling energy costs, one Cork woman’s post on putting in some spade work to stack up on turf for as little as €1 a bag has attracted considerable attention.
Aontú representative for Cork Becky Kealy posted a photo to Facebook at the weekend showing her hard at work footing turf in Taur in North Cork.
“Another day..another hopper to be footed,” she wrote. “Get it done lads, if anyone wants turf in North Cork let me know and I will pass contact information.”
“One hopper is €50, you get about 50 bags of turf out of that one hopper. That’s €1 for a bag of turf…provided you do all the turning, stacking and bagging yourself!”
“The price of coal is gone through the roof, this is a cheaper alternative and there’s fierce heat off it. We only used blocks and Turf last year, no coal,” she wrote.
The Cork woman explained to Gript.ie that she has been receiving a steady stream of inquiries
“You can buy the right to foot, bag and take home turf from a stretch or length of bog – called a hopper – in Cork and in many other counties, but you need to be prepared to put in a few days of hard work,” she said.
“The person who owns the bog actually uses a machine to dig the turf out, and spread it to leave it to dry and after that it’s up to you after that,” she explained. “After drying for a few weeks you need to go back and turn it over and then after another few weeks you need to go up and foot it.”
“Footing turf is where you stack it or stand it up in such a way that the air dries it out: it’s hard work, bending and moving for hours but it’s a great feeling when you look at it at the end of the day,” she said. “Then you have to go back and bag it and carry it home.”
Ms Kealy said that when the turf was dry it “produced great heat” and was long-lasting. “Buy the hopper – the turf is cut out of the ground for you – get the turf turned, footed and bagged and you’ll be set for winter,” she said.
“It’s amazing really, for about €50 and a few days of hard work you’d have fuel for the fire for months,” she said.
Ms Kealy said that turf was an “essential resource” and that people who were anxious “as most are” about the rising costs of home fuels, should get to the bog if they could.
“The Greens can take a hike,” she added. “The small bogs are there for Irish people at a time when the Germans and others are going back to coal because of the global energy crisis. We should put the well being of our people first”.
“It’s an essential Irish resource, it’s there, we have it, people should use it.”