Images of Sligo will be broadcast into over one million homes across Australia later this year, after one of the country’s most popular travel programmes, Gurus Explore, filmed on location here over the weekend.
Organised by Tourism Ireland in conjunction with Fáilte Ireland, the TV crew spent a week shooting footage in the West and the North West - including the Voya Seaweed Baths in Strandhill where they met with Neil Walton; Drumcliffe Churchyard and Glencar Waterfall where Ita Leyden recited the poetry of WB Yeats; and the Carrowmore Megalithic Tombs. They also met with Stella Mews at the Yeats Society and filmed some of the Yeats Trail.
The result will be an hour-long programme broadcast in the autumn on national TV on Channel 9, on digital 9HD, as well as on regional channel NBN TV - with total viewership figures in excess of 1 million. The Gurus filmed in Northern Ireland last year; the resulting programme aired this spring in Australia delivering publicity worth over AUS$2 million (approximately €1.25 million).
Orla Saul, Tourism Ireland Australia, said: “We are absolutely delighted that the Gurus Explore crew has chosen to film in the North West. This is a tremendous opportunity to highlight and showcase the very best of this part of the island of Ireland to a huge Australian audience; from its natural attractions such as Ben Bulben, the scenic coast and its excellent surfing beaches, to the wonderful literary heritage and not forgetting its strongest asset - the warm welcome of the local people.
“The publicity value of a TV programme such as this is incalculable. It is an excellent way of promoting the wonderful tourism product in the North West to a mass audience. Australia is a key market for tourism to the island of Ireland and we have a very strong and comprehensive promotional programme under way there for 2009.”
The Guru's Explore TV crew at work in Drumcliffe Churchyard. Pictured are Neville Passmore (presenter), Lawrence Sayers (camera man), Kale Radics (sound man) and Rex Ranieri (producer).
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland t: 01 476 3493/ 087 685 9027