Next Episode of Great British Railway Journeys is
Documentary series in which Michael Portillo travels the length and breadth of the country by train.
At Trinity College, Dublin, Michael Portillo discovers one of Ireland's greatest treasures and learns how it became the symbol of the nation. There is a chance to sample the black stuff in a Dublin pub before Michael learns how Victorian royals were deployed to calm rocky relations between Britain and Ireland. He explores the magnificent house and gardens of Powerscourt in County Wicklow. Finding an angle on triangulation helps Michael to understand how Ireland was put on the map - and why.
Michael Portillo gets up to speed with modern archaeology in County Meath and uncovers a controversial Victorian dig at the sacred Hill of Tara. He investigates leaping salmon in Leixslip and discovers an electrifying breakthrough at an historic seminary. At Mullingar, Michael bangs the drum for the town's marching band.
With his Victorian Bradshaw's guidebook in hand, Michael Portillo crosses the Emerald Isle uncovering Irish identity, forged at a time of political strife. Travelling through the beautiful landscape, Michael learns how it inspired one of the 20th century's greatest poets, WB Yeats. In Dromod, Michael learns how to make an Irish staple - a potato pancake, known as boxty. At the home of the father of Irish fiddling, Michael attempts to master a traditional Irish dance.
On the last leg of Michael Portillo's long journey from Wexford to Westport, a fashionable Victorian seaweed bath is followed by a steamy scene in Ballina. On tenterhooks in Foxford, Michael discovers the visionary charity of an entrepreneurial nun. He learns of a double tragedy at Clew Bay and begins a pilgrimage to the summit of Ireland's holy mountain, Croagh Patrick.
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