RTE’s Today Show will shine a spotlight on County Clare on Wednesday May 24th with a special broadcast from Vandeleur Walled Garden & Visitor Centre and Scattery Island.
Organised in conjunction with the Tourism Department of Clare County Council and the Clare tourism industry, the outside broadcast will also profile Burren GEOfood producers and host live performances from local musicians.
The popular daytime programme, presented by Maura Derrane and Daithi O’Sé, will commence at 3.30pm with a feature on Scattery Island, the site of an early Christian settlement founded by St Senan in the sixth century. Michele O’Dea from OPW, which manages the island, will speak about the recently completed refurbishment of the Street, a row of settlements that were once inhabited by the families of the Kilbaha river pilots on the Shannon Estuary.
Representatives of the local community and tourism sector will be present at the Vandeleur Walled Garden & Visitor Centre in Kilrush for a live broadcast that will profile the extensive restoration works that have been underway since 2021. A new interpretative museum will open at the popular visitor attraction later this month.
Burren GEOfood will take centre stage later in the show. Among the businesses displaying their produce and hosting a cooking demonstration for the television cameras in Kilrush will be Burren Premium Beef, Linnalla Ice Cream and Flaggy Shore Oysters.
Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council Cllr. Tony O’Brien said the national exposure that Kilrush and County Clare will get from the television broadcast cannot be overstated.
“Clare County Council is immensely proud of its ongoing investment in Vandeleur Walled Garden & Visitor Centre and the development of a top-class visitor attraction that will deliver long lasting and tangible economic benefits for Kilrush, West Clare and the wider economy,” added Cllr. O’Brien. “It is important that everyone associated with Clare tourism now works towards increasing awareness of this valuable heritage tourism product.”
Noel Kilkenny, Chairperson of Kilrush Civic Amenity Trust Ltd, commented, “We continue to receive very positive feedback from customers and visitors to Vandeleur Walled Gardens & Visitor Centre, and we are very excited about the scheduled opening of the new Visitor Centre, later this month.”
Mr. Kilkenny confirmed that an Open Weekend will take place on Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th June.
“Members of the local community are being invited to get a flavour of what’s new at our visitor attraction during an enlightening talk at 10.30am each day. Further information is available from www.vandeleurwalledgarden.ie,” he stated.
Mr. Kilkenny continued, “I want to acknowledge the significant funding support of the Department of Rural & Community Development, Clare County Council as well as ongoing support from Coillte, the relevant designs teams, and the staff and management of the Centre for bringing the new developments to fruition. We look forward to showcasing the fruits of their labour and their steadfast support to a national audience during the upcoming outside broadcast.”
Michele O’Dea, OPW Senior Conservation Architect for Scattery Island, stated, “We welcome RTÉ to Scattery Island and to be given the opportunity to have images of the 36-metre-high round tower, medieval church ruins, and the ‘Street’ beamed into homes across the country. A sustainable approach to tourism development lies at the heart of the OPW’s management of Scattery, and we look forward to sharing the story of the island’s multi-layered 1,500-year history during the broadcast.”