A Sense of Tradition: The Last Wolf

A Sense of Tradition: The Last Wolf

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County Londonderry, Dungiven, Pellipar Estate




September 1993


14min 53sec







Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Department for Communities, ITV, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

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It is illegal to download, copy, print or otherwise utilise in any other form this material, without written consent from the copyright holder.


An ITV schools programme.

Using the methods of reenactment, time markers and maps, and by visiting current day locations, presenter Oliver McGilloway embarks on the fantastical, fascinating story of Ireland - from the time of the last wolf to the Great Famine. Carrying on from the previous episode of Celts and Vikings, we begin in the market town of Dungiven, County Londonderry.

Next, we are taken to the Pellipar Estate, where a great house stands, the viewers are told that during this time most of the land was rented to tenant farmers. However, despite having large parts of their land occupied, the family would have kept a substantial area of land surrounding the house, a 'demesne'. Over many years, the tenant farmers cleared the forests across Ireland for farming land - this activity played a significant part in eradicating wolves from the island, there being nowhere for them to hide and, so, they were easily hunted. 

The lack of trees also meant ordinary people suffered, as there was no wood for fires to provide warmth through the winter, cook their food, or dry their clothes. Tough though conditions were, it was - in certain respects - a healthy way of life and the population boomed during the period. 


ITV Schools was the educational television service set up in 1957 by the Independent Television Authority, broadcasting learning programmes for children ages 5 to 18 across ITV-affiliated stations. It was an example of public service broadcasting on a commerical television network. ITV moved its schools programming to Channel 4 in 1987, although ITV continued to produce programmes and the service continued to use the ITV name for another six years.The last ITV Schools programme on Channel 4 aired on Monday, 28th June, 1993.   


Presented by Oliver McGilloway. 

Facilities provided by Northland Films.

An Ulster Television Production. 



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