Cut and Dried

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Spotted one recent evening on the edge of a road in County Meath: wedges of manually cut turf left in neat heaps to dry before being brought to myriad homesteads where they will be burnt as fuel. It is a sight familiar for millennia in Ireland, and in recently centuries beloved by countless painters, but unlikely to be seen for much longer. The widespread use of industrial machinery and the need to preserve the country’s remaining peat bogs mean turf stacks such as these are soon likely to be just a memory.

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