Ireland Reaching Out

Longford Workhouse

The first shoot of the forthcoming 6-part TG4 series the Ireland Reaching Out programme took place on the 8th and 9th of April with North Kerry Reaching Out. The programme involves 6 counties in Ireland. Julie Evans from Sydney Australia comes back to Listowel from where her great great grandmother, Bridget Ryan left the Workhouse in 1849, travelling on the Earl Grey Scheme to Australia. However, spending time with the local community and with the help of local knowledge, Julie discovers that all is not quite as it might seem to have been. Julie commented during the filming:

‘I feel a responsibility; I feel a real connection with her now. I feel as if I’ve come to know her over all these years, even though I have only two photos of her. I feel I have a responsibility to pass on her story to my children and their children. I don’t want her ever to be forgotten. I think what she did was amazing, what all those girls did was absolutely amazing. To agree to get on a boat, to go to somewhere they had never heard of, to the other side of the world, on their own, with just a few of the other girls from the workhouse, I find that extraordinarily brave’.

The rest of the series is being filmed by Red Pepper Productions across the summer of 2013 and will be aired in autumn. Are you visiting Ireland this year?

We can help you reconnect! Ireland XO has dedicated volunteers on the ground all over Ireland. Find out where your ancestors came from and reconnect with your place of origin.