Plato, pilates and pubs: has an Irish town found the secret to the good life?

3 months ago 20

Book claims it is ‘hard to find another currently existing society’ better than that in Skerries, near Dublin

Philosophers have long debated the concept of the good life and whether such an exalted state exists but the reality turns out to be not so elusive: you drive north from Dublin on the M1, turn right onto the R132, take another right at Blake’s Cross and keep going until you reach the sea. Then, if you have any sense, you stay put for ever because you are in Skerries.

This town of 11,000 people on Ireland’s east coast does not look remarkable. There is a high street, a harbour, a library, a community centre, a SuperValu supermarket, cafes, pubs, sports pitches. Residents walk their dogs, play bingo, sit on benches. Yet amid the ordinariness there is, apparently, an answer to a riddle pondered by Aristotle, Kant and Hegel: the good life? It’s right here. Or at least the good enough life.

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