Dunluce Castle to be ‘Unearthed’

Rita Fitzgerald
Rita Fitzgerald

In the final episode of the UTV series Unearthed, the Ulster Unearthed team visits Dunluce Castle on the rugged north Antrim coast and finds evidence of an early Ulster-Scots settlement and the remains of a medieval hall dating back to the 1550s on … Monday 11 February at 8pm on UTV. The Ulster Unearthed series is presented by UTV’s Rita FitzGerald and produced by Televisionary:NI, a new, local independent production company. The series received funding from the Northern Ireland Screen Ulster-Scots Broadcast Fund (USBF).

Throughout the series of six, 30-minute programmes, the team explored a 400-year-old fort at Dunnalong on the banks of the River Foyle and travelled to where a bloody battle took place near Ballymoney in 1642. Ulster Unearthed also visited Carrickfergus, a town that predates Belfast, to examine the castle which has played an important military role for nearly a thousand years.

In Ballycarry, the team examined land thought to have been the site of an Ulster-Scots stronghold. They searched for an Ulster-Scots settlement in Bangor but found relics from a much earlier period.

Televisionary:NI’s Creative Director, Jeremy Hibbard said: “Thousands of people came to Ulster from Scotland during the seventeenth century. These ‘Ulster-Scots’ made the journey to escape religious persecution, improve their standing in life and also because the journey was short and easy to make.

“Ulster Unearthed provides an insight into what life was like for them back then. We watch as ground is broken for the first time - and analyse each dig as it comes to a close. We use the latest technology to help uncover archaeological secrets. Our experts are passionate about their subject - making the story-telling both entertaining and enlightening.”

Michael Wilson, UTV’s Managing Director of Television said: “This is a fascinating new series. We have a long track record of working with Televisionary and we’re looking forward to the same success that their Ultimate Ulster series delivered for UTV. It was not only the most-watched non-news programme on UTV at that time, but also the most-watched regional programme in the whole of the UK.”

Rita FitzGerald said: “Ulster Unearthed is a fabulous series to work on. I hope viewers enjoy watching it as much as we did making it! The history and special effects are really amazing.”