29 Sept 2022

The rich history of Rann na Feirste explored in Bailte on TG4

Hughie McGarvey tells the story of the first settlers to the area

This Autumn a new series of the award winning ‘Bailte’ returns with presenter Síle Nic Chonaonaigh visiting Rann na Feirste - an area rich in artistry, culture and craic. 

Hughie McGarvey will recount the rich history associated with the area on the show that is due to air on September 22. During the presenter's visit to the area she finds a lively, artistic and proud community steeped in literature, storytelling music and song.

She learns of the origins of the village when in 1736 the Mac Grianna brothers Seán and Pádraig purchased land here for £5 and of how these first settlers still influence the fortunes and lives of the local community to this day.

With over 60,000 townlands in Ireland, communities remain one of the pillars of modern Irish life, and on this journey Síle explores the resilience within our rural communities and reveals the deep connection people have with their townland and how local landscapes and traditions remain a constant influence on our daily lives. 

The series celebrates hard working and vibrant communities that are working to ensure their community is more than just a mere layby and a pretty spot on the Wild Atlantic Way. With the spectacular backdrop of rural Ireland and an honest telling of contemporary life ‘Bailte’ gives a distinctive portrayal of life in Ireland.

Each week, Síle visits a different townland and community to learn what life is like for local people. Some townlands she visits have hundreds of locals, while others have much fewer, while one townland we visit has just the one family. As well as the many advantages of living in rural townlands, the series also shares the difficulties living in remote area, rural depopulation, lack of basic services, unemployment, and the uncertain futures of both the farming and the fishing industries. The series finds the pulse of rural Ireland in 2022.  

Among the other townlands visited are Tír an Fhia in Galway, Béal Átha an Ghaorthaidh in Cork, and An Baile Riabhach on the Dingle Peninsula. 

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