The Other Irish Travellers broadcast on BBC4's Storyville, December 2012 and on RTE ONE, May 2013 as Neither Fish nor Fowl.
The Other Irish Travellers takes a quizzical look at Ireland's vanished colonial class, the Protestant Ascendancy. Filmmaker Fiona Murphy's aunts and uncles were part of the last generation of practical joking, horsey, intensely religious, literary Anglo-Irish. But Ireland after independence demanded fierce patriotism, their father was a "real" Irishman and some of them felt the call of Ireland more than England, and didn't identify with the Ascendancy and it's values. Christopher was fired up with stories of rebellion and Devalera's anti-British slogans. The girls identified with the crown. Their father, totally Irish, was nevertheless a loyal colonialist who became Governor of the Bahamas. To the anguish of their mother, the children, with their Irish name and their Anglo trappings, were torn. They still can't agree on their nationality.
Now in their seventies and eighties, the ebullient siblings go back to the house where they grew up, without electricity, a car or a telephone. The house is still full of dusty gun cabinets, swords, boar’s heads, and a hundred year old boots. Steeped in the traditions of fellow Protestants, Oscar Wilde, John Synge, Jonathan Swift and WB Yeats, they bring the ghosts of Anglo Ireland back to life along with the pain of losing the life that went it. Around them scamper the children of the next generation, indifferent to the Cromwellian inheritance, straightfowardly Irish.
The Other Irish Travellers