Airtime (T.U.R.F. Project 1)


Giving voice to individuals impacted by international environmental policies.

The EU Habitats Directive came into force in Ireland in 2012, making cutting turf illegal on raised peat bogs in Special Areas of Conservation (SACs). The Turf Cutters and Contractors Association represented some of families threatened with the loss of the right to cut turf for domestic use, and members approached Deirdre in 2011 to ask if she could hold a Mind Meitheal and bring together cultural, scientific and legislative expertise to examine the decision-making process on the designation of habitats. Minutes of the gathering at NUI Galway were given to the TCCA and sent to relevant State and EU departments.

Deirdre further documented the stories and voices of those with turf cutting rights during the Peatlands Forum presided over by Justice John Quirke in February 2012. She set up a camera in the lobby of the hotel hosting the enquiry, and anyone who wished had three minutes to speak to camera. The resulting film Airtime, was unedited unless requested by participants, and exhibited a month later in Tense at Limerick City Gallery of Art. A further T.U.R.F. archival installation took place at Limerick City Gallery of Art in 2013.

TURF MindMeitheal Notes FINAL 11.2.12. Taken by Dr. Trish O’Flynn at NUI Galway Feb 2012.

The Quirke Report 2012


  • Athlone
  • Limerick City Gallery of Art