My name is Andrew Doherty.
I was born in 1965 and I have lived in the Cheekpoint area all my life. When I completed my schooling I turned to the family business, fishing. In the 1990's restrictions and government policies started to impact on the fishing practices in traditional villages such as Cheekpoint, and in 2006 the principal fishery, salmon drift-netting closed. In 2008 I wrote a dissertation on the plight of my community as a consequence of the closure.
In 2012 I started writing a blog, as a means of gathering my thoughts, particularly on the social situation in my own community and specifically on government inaction on preserving or supporting traditional fishing communities to remain viable. My means of expression in the blog also reflected the values, ethos and practices that I had grown up with. But then I started to realise that rather than banging on about how bad our situation was, perhaps people might respond better to a different type of message. An example of what we have done in the community it this event as part of the Ireland Newfoundland exchange of 2005, filmed by my great friend Brian Walsh of Hi lite TV.
Through my blog I now hope to create an awareness, appreciation and perhaps an appetite for the preservation of the way of life I have grown up with. I explain it and share some of my ideas and stories here. I also hope that in reading my thoughts, people might be encouraged to come visit with us here, and perhaps pay a small stipend towards seeing the area through a fisherman's eye. In the last few years we have hosted many visitors and walking parties to learn about our community, the history, heritage, flora, fauna and wildlife. I can't claim to be making any major inroads into reversing my communities fortunes, but I can say at least that I am trying to do something positive. And with friends like Mark Power at Waterford Epic Locations I am getting my message out.