My interest in Irish railways was pretty much ingrained in childhood experience, my grandfather on the mothers side was a driver on the Midland but had died before my time, in the 60s railway did not exactly have a positive image breakdowns and line closures, a sunday afternoon walk over pat of the Meath Line before it was lifted. Ours was very much a car family but got the occasional squint over the railway wall when we were driving somewhere, despite this I got interested in model trains, and persisted even if my parents hoped I would grow out of it
The thin end of the wedge was when I persuaded my mother to buy a copy of Model Railway News in 66 or 67, there was no putting the genie back in the bottle.
The first Irish Layout that really inspired me was Malahide and Dromin Junction it was on display in the Kilkenny Shop in Nassau Street, around the same time I started reading the works of Iain Rice I could not et anything to work but his writing as like a breath of fresh air
Around the same time an article on Castle Rackrent appeared in the Modeller a minimum space WLWR broad gauge layout, which later morphed into something much bigger about 100'. I even got to see the original while living in Scotland.
A couple of years ago I was surprised that 30 years later he layout is still going strong and regularly operated
Time I stopped musing and did something to get something running I have a trio of Murphy Models B141s an AEC railcar set built from Worsley Works parts and a few kit built coaches, wagons and vans.
Looking at steam the Lines North & West of Limerick were mainly worked by J15s with small 4-4-0s & MGWR locos appearing North of Limerick.
I have a pair of J15s, a Midland Tank, some GNR locos plus some kits stashed away. All need some work control will probably stay analogue. Most of these kits were assembled 15-20 years ago the dilemma is whether to concentrate m energies on building new models to current best practice design or my existing loco stock.