Niamh Hourigan: Vice-president academic affairs, Mary Immaculate College in Limerick
What’s your idea of a perfect day, or a perfect weekend, in Limerick?
I like go to town on Saturday with my children and have coffee in Bean an Tí and wander around the market.
What’s your first Limerick memory?
Going to see Santa in Todds when I was little with my brother and sister.
What’s your favourite part of the county and why?
My dad is from Ahane so I love that part of the county.
What about a favourite local walk or view?
I like to walk from the Treaty Stone down Clancy and O’Callaghan Strand and then loop around to the wildlife sanctuary in Westfield park.
What do you think gives Limerick its unique identity?
I think its history, industrial as well as political, also the Shannon itself.
Do you have a favourite local restaurant?
Yes, I love going to the French Table on Steamboat Quay.
How would you describe the people of Limerick?
Friendly but direct, both very positive qualities!
How important do you think sport is to Limerick?
Obviously hurling has had a huge impact in the last year but rugby also played a significant role in building pride in the city when the local economy was less buoyant. I also think that the role that soccer and boxing has played in building self-esteem amongst young people in the city cannot be underestimated.
What’s the biggest challenge facing the city/county today?
I think there are two big challenges. The first is housing both in terms of housing everyone who is already here and creating space for those who may wish to live in Limerick as the city grows and the local economy continues to develop.
The second challenge is the ever present danger of the hollowing out the city centre due to development in the suburbs, something which always been a particular challenge for Limerick.