A brief biography of Betty Watson, one of the participants who volunteered to be interviewed for the Bridge-IT project.

Item Type


Birth Date



Pearse Street Area, Dublin


Factory worker, mother, adult education co-ordinator

Biographical Text

Betty Watson was born in 1942 and she grew up in the Pearse Street area of Dublin city. She spent the first six years of her life in Townsend Street and then moved into a flat in Markievicz House. Betty is from a family of 11 children, she had six sisters and four brothers.

Betty started her working life three weeks before her 14th birthday when she was taken out of school to work in a sewing factory. She continued to work in the factory even after she married at age 20. Her husband worked in the gas company in the section called the ‘purifiers’ and following that he worked in the pavement department of Dublin City Council. It wasn’t until she had her first child that Betty stopped working in the factory and began to work as a house cleaner while she reared her family of six children. She remembers that during this time she largely depended on her husband’s income as her own income was supplementary.

Betty recalls that she was not academically prepared for life having left school at 14. She felt that life was difficult for her as a young mother, trying to rear six children on a shoe-string. Betty was always very active in the docklands community and later in her life when her youngest child was finishing his schooling she returned to education herself. Betty is very adamant about the value of education particularly for people living in her community. In her adulthood she has achieved her Leaving Certificate as well as numerous training courses in management, and community development skills as well as counselling and a two year certificate in Psychology from Maynooth University.

Betty now works as an adult education co-ordinator in St. Andrews resource centre which serves the south dockland community in Dublin.

About this item

Date Added



"Betty Watson." Lifescapes: Mapping Dublin Lives, Item #285 (accessed March 20 2018, 7:44 pm)