'A perfect symbiosis between text and images -
both similarity affectionate, respectful, humorous,
slightly melancholic but never sentimental or nostalgic.
This is invaluable social history'.
Cara, Jan-Feb 2014.
'This is a
beautiful and remarkably simple book
melt the hardest of hearts. Bunbury has a light writing
style that lets his interviewees, elderly folk from around
the country, tell their stories without interference. It's
neither patronising nor overly romantic about the past;
just narrating moving tales ... The portraits by Fennell are
striking, warm and dignified, with a feeling of being
invited into people's lives'.
The Sunday Times, December 2013.
Since 2001, historian Turtle Bunbury and
James Fennell have criss-crossed their native Ireland
innumerable times, interviewing and photographing
over 300 people aged between 70 and 108 about the
old ways of life. Their findings have been published
in a series of beautiful coffee table books.
'Vanishing Ireland -Friendship & Community', the fourth
and final book in the series, was short-listed for the 2013
Best Irish Published Book of the Year. It was was launched
in October 2013, with talks by Turtle in London, Paris,
Dublin and Cork.
All four 'Vanishing Ireland' books
are available via
Since the publication of
the first volume in 2006, the
series has become a household name across Ireland
with the Irish Independent hailing it as 'an invaluable
record of times past'. Three of the books have
been short-listed for Best Irish Published Book of the
Year, while the third volume was the best-selling
‘Picture Book’ in Ireland at Christmas 2011.
Turtle and James also collaborated on ‘The Irish Pub’, an
ode to the rapidly changing pub scene in rural Ireland,
which inspired a feature length movie of the same name.
Turtle has given talks
on the project in New
London, Chicago, Dublin, Limerick, Dublin, Carlow,
Cork, Kilkenny and Monte Carlo.
Click here to Join the
'Vanishing Ireland' Facebook page.
The series has also enjoyed a run of successful
Burtown House, Co. Kildare; Smock Alley Theatre
and the City Assembly House, Dublin; Cill Rialaig, Co.
Kerry; the Visual Arts Centre in Carlow & the Hunt
Museum in Limerick City.
are available in
Ireland or from Turtle's Amazon Store.
is a best-selling
speaker and TV presenter based in Ireland.
His next book 'The Glorious Madness - Tales of the
Irish & the Great War' will be published by Gill &
Macmillan in October. He is one of the keynote
speakers on the Great War Roadshow, which will
tour Ireland over the summer of 2014. Click here
for details of upcoming events.
He is a co-presenter of 'Genealogy
second series aired on the Irish television channel
RTE One in May 2014.
He is the founder of Wistorical, an innovative
concept for promoting Irish history globally.
Turtle's past books include the award-winning
Vanishing Ireland series, Sporting Legends of
Ireland, The Irish Pub and Living in Sri Lanka. The
last Vanishing Ireland book was short-listed for
Best Irish Published Book of the Year 2013.
Breakfast's Resident Historian
from June to December 2013.
Turtle is the co-founder of the
History Festival of Ireland.
A past winner of Ireland's Long Haul Travel
Journalist of the Year Award, he wrote the April 2014
cover story for National Geographic Traveler in
which he visited five of Ireland's finest 'Big Houses'.
His work has also been published in The World of
Interiors, Playboy, The Irish Times, The Financial
Times, The New York Post, The Australian,
The Guardian and Vogue Living.
Click here to join Wistorical, Turtle's historical blog, which he updates daily. It's an innovative forum for promoting local history globally, bringing the past to life through new technology and social media channels.
The second series of the 'Genealogy Roadshow' aired on RTE One during May 2014. The three episodes were filmed at Powerscourt, County Wicklow, University College Cork and Lumen Christi College, Derry. In each episode, Turtle - as a historian - teams up with genealogists John Grenham and Susan Chadwick to investigate claims by people who believe they have famous or infamous relatives, or that they are connected to a historical event or long-standing mystery.
Produced by Big Mountain, the pioneering series originally aired on RTE1 television in 2011, was repeated twice in 2012 and again in both 2013 and January 2014. PBS America developed its own version of the Big Mountain format which aired in 2013 and is also up for a second series. For more details, click here.
TURTLE ON NEWSTALK
Turtle was Resident Historian on Newstalk Breakfast radio from June to December 2013. Click on the logo above to hear podcasts of his popular 'Hidden Histories' slot.
(Illustration by Derry Dillon)
HISTORY FESTIVAL OF IRELAND
Turtle was co-founder with Hugo Jellett of the History Festival of Ireland and curated the event in 2012 and 2013. He also spoke at the 2014 History Festival which took place at Huntington Castle in County Carlow on the weekend of 8-9 June. The 2014 curator was Angus Mitchell.
Turtle frequently lends his historical expertise to TV documentaries such as 'The Genealogy Roadshow', 'Who Do You Think You Are?' and 'Wogan's Ireland', in which he pondered the drunkenness of the Jacobite troops at the battle of the Boyne with Sir Terry Wogan. He co-scripted and researched the award-nominated documentary 'John Henry Foley - Sculptor of the Empire'. He was Resident Historian on Newstalk Breakfast show from June to December 2013.
Turtle has delivered talks on the 'Vanishing Ireland' project, the Dublin Docklands, 'Big House' archives and the history of the Bunbury family to the New York and Chicago chapters of the Irish Georgian Society, as well as the 2013 Poesie and Prose Literary Festival in Paris, the Irish Writers Festival in London, the 2013 St Patrick's Festival (Marsh's Library) in Dublin, the 2012 Tall Ships Festival in Dublin and the Royal Dublin Society.
Tutle is a guest blogger for the Irish Executives on LinkedIn, as well as a frequent contributor to the Discover Ireland website, WorldIrish.com, Irish Family Names, the Wild Geese Blog and the Gathering Ireland 2013 campaign.
He has also talked about inspirational books with Daisy Banks of The Browser.
In 2011, he was the Ireland Fund of Monaco's Writer-in-Residence at the Princess Grace Irish Library.
Dublin Docklands, The Landed Gentry & Aristocracy of County Wicklow and The Landed Gentry of County Kildare are all presently out of print. However, you will find the content of all three books freely available via the 'Published Books' section on the sidebar of this website.
This website has been compiled in the interest of furthering the research and study of both local and international history.