Running around what was the eastern boundary of the grounds of Southway School is Skerries Road. Curiously enough the word Skerry comes from an old Norse –Viking – term ‘Skere’ which has come to mean a small coastal island, the plural form being a group of small coastal islands. And certainly that is what we find just off the coast at the seaside town of Skerries, eighteen miles from Dublin, in Ireland. There are five islands; Shenick, St Patrick’s, Colt, Rockabill and Red Island(which had a Holiday Camp built on it in the 1950s …it was pulled down in the 1970s). Skerries has plenty of Viking surnames still dotted around what has been a thriving fishing port and centre of hand embroidery, it also boasts two fully-restored and working windmills.
Meanwhile, more famous for its birdlife are the Out Skerries, a rocky outcrop that lie at the meeting point of the Atlantic and the North Sea – halfway between Scotland and Norway – some twenty miles beyond the island of Shetland.
There is also another distinctive group of rocky islands off the northwest coast of Anglesssey known as the Welsh Skerries – although the Welsh name for this group is actually Ynysoedd y Moelrhoniaid – ‘the island of the seals’.