Turtle Bunbury

Writer and Historian

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Above: Turtle on RTE1's 'Who Do You Think You Are?'
with former Miss World Roseanna Davison.

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Above: Turtle on 'Wogan's Ireland' with Terry Wogan.

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Above: Turtle on 'Antiques to the Rescue' with John Foster.

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Above: Turtle with his 'Genealogy Roadshow' co-presenters
Nicola Morris & John Grenham outside Slane Castle, Co. Meath.



(For Press Coverage click here)


Guest appearance on 'Lords and Ladles' on RTE.

Turtle interviewed about '1847' by Sean O'Rourke on RTE Radio One.

Turtle on RTE Radio One's 'Countrywide', recalling the glory day of Big Bertha's wake.


Turtle interviewed about the twilight of the Big House on RTE Radio One's Countrywide with Frances Shanahan.


Series 2 of the Genealogy Roadshow airs.

Interview on 'Savage Sunday' with Anton Savage on Today FM.

The History Show on RTE Radio One broadcasts a five minute reading by Turtle on 'The Night of the Big Wind.'

A second series of 'The Genealogy Roadshow' commences filming early in the new year.

In September 2012, Turtle appeared on BBC2's 'Antiques to the Rescue', with John Foster and Morgan Kavanagh, talking about the Incredible Mr. Kavanagh of Borris House in Co. Carlow, Ireland.

There was a welcome rerun of 'The Genealogy Roadshow' on RTE1 in June 2012 (as well as an afternoon repeat March and April 2012), while Turtle was busy talking about the centenary of Titanic's sinking with Sue Nunn on KCLR. Turtle also talked about Operation Shamrock with Tom Dunne, about family history with Myles Dungan and about Edward Lear's Irish adventures with Sean Moncrieff.


In 2011, Turtle appeared on 'The Genealogy Roadshow' (RTE1) and 'Wogan's Ireland' (BBC1), as well as 'The Daily Show' (RTE1), 'The Morning Show' (TV3) and 'The History Show' (RTE Radio 1) where he discussed the wonderful Lola Montez with Myles Dungan, and 'Mooney' (RTE Radio 1) to talk of 'Vanishing Ireland' with Derek Mooney.

He also went on the 'Moncrieff Show' on Newstalk to ponder both Lola and the unfortunate Easter 1916 soldier Guy Pinfield. In March 2011, he featured on Australian television during a trip to Queensland to review how the state was recovering after the dreadful floods earlier in the year. He is also a frequent guest on 'Nationwide', TV3's 'Ireland A.M.' and Irish radio. In May 2011, he talked about Obama's visit to Ireland with Michael Patrick Shiels on Michigan's Morning Show (1240 WJIM).

(28 November 2011)
Turtle talks with Gerry Kelly about the Vanishing Ireland project.

The Daily Show (RTE One)
(25 November 2011)
Turtle talks about the new book with Dáithí Ó Sé, Claire Byrne and Joe Duffy.

The Morning Show (TV3)
(21 November 2011)
Turtle fields questions about what makes a classic Irish snug while seated in Kehoe's of Dublin with Brian Daly.

Mooney (RTE Radio One)
(1 Nov 2011)
Turtle spoke with Derek Mooney about the third Vanishing Ireland book ... you can hear the interview here by clicking on the above link, go to Listen Back and the short interview comes on at 53.30 minutes into it.

Genealogy Roadshow (RTE1)
(Aug-Sept 2011)
Turtle was one of the three presenters of the acclaimed four-part series which combines 'The Antiques Roadshow' with 'Who Do You Think You Are?'

Moncrieff (Newstalk)
(Feb 2011)
Turtle joins Sean Moncrieff to talk about the delcatale Lola Montez, born 180 years ago this month.

Wogan's Ireland (BBC1)
(January 2011)
Turtle talks with Sir Terry Wogan about the battle of the Boyne and the alcohol that decimated the Jacobite rations.

The History Show (RTE Radio One)
Turtle joined Myles Dungan and Seona MacReamoinn to talk about Lola Montez, the femme fatale and exotic dancer from Ireland who became the most powerful woman in Bavaria in 1847. Listen to a podcast of the show, dated 23rd January 2011, here.


Ireland AM (TV3)
Turtle and co-author James Fennell discuss their new book, 'Sporting Legends of Ireland'.

RTE Radio One
Turtle and co-author James Fennell discuss the book with Darragh Maloney on 'Sport at 7'.

Newstalk 106
Turtle and co-author James Fennell discuss the 'Sporting Legends' book with Tom Dunne.

(5th July 2010)
Turtle made his debut as a presenter on 'Nationwide' in a show watched by 33.8% of Irish television audiences. His chosen subject was 88-year-old Baby Rudden, the cover-girl of the second 'Vanishing Ireland - Further Chronicles of a Disappearing World'.

Sean Moncrieff & Tom McGurk
(Newstalk & 4FM, March 2010)
Turtle gives his verdict on the Easter 1916 flag up for auction in New York.

John Henry Foley - Sculptor of an Empire
(TG4, March 2010)
Repeat airing of the award-nominated TV documentary about the eminent Irish Victorian sculptor, researched and co-scripted by Turtle Bunbury.

The Sue Nunn Show
(KCLR, March 2010)
An in-depth interview with Turtle about gentry, walled gardens, Sri Lankan style and the Vanishing Ireland project.

(RTE1, Feb 2010)
Turtle recently escorted Nationwide's Niall Martin on a tour of the Grand Canal Docks for a show that aired on RTE One, Monday 22 February 2010. Some 447,000 people tuned in to watch the episode and you can too by clicking here; Turtle is in second half.


The Tom Dunne Show
(Newstalk 106, 17 December 2009)
Turtle and James live in studio with Tom Dunne on a day when the reputation of the Roman Catholic church in Ireland was once again on the slide. (Go to Thursday 17 Dec, Part 2, fw to 18 mins).

The Last Word
(Today FM, 11 December 2009)
Turtle and James in studio with Matt Cooper discussing the book, in the same show that broadcast Paul Gogarty's infamous 'F.U. Deputy Stagg'.

Saturday Magazine
(BBC Ulster, November 2009)
John Toal finds the common ground between Turtle and Vanishing Ireland's cover girl, Baby Rudden.

Saturday Breakfast
(4FM, November 2009)
Turtle talks about tracing ancestors who served in British forces the First World War with Maura O’Neill.

Ireland A.M.
(TV3, 27 October 2009).
Turtle and James Fennell talk of ancient humour, barefoot children and the good old, bad old days with Mark Cagney and Elaine Crowley. The interview was repeated on Ireland AM's best of the week review on Saturday 31st October.

The Tubridy Show
(RTE Radio One, 26 October 2009)
Turtle discusses the Vanishing Ireland project with Ryan Tubridy in a bank holiday special, extracts of which were repeated on RTE 1's 'Playback' review on Saturday 31st October.

Lyric FM
(October 2009)
Turtle explains the concept of the Your History in a Book to Aedín Gormley on Arts News.

Who Do You Think You Are?
(RTE 1, September 2009)
Turtle appeared on the episode with former Miss World Roseanna Davison, escorting her to the de Burgh's Georgian townhouse and the Manuscripts Room of the National Library.

The Tom Dunne Show
(Newstalk 106, September 2009)
Turtle tracks the family history of former rock star and DJ Tom Dunne back to the coopers of the Guinness brewery and the muddy trenches of the First World War.

'Outbreak - Killer Influenza'
(RTE 1, June 2009)
RTE documentary in which Turtle was a consultant, examining the effects of the Spanish Flu epidmic which killed more than 20,000 across Ireland (and 50 million worldwide).

(RTE1, 11 February 2009)
Turtle Bunbury and James Fennell talk Ireland through the decline of the Irish pub live from O'Shea's of Borris and Lenehan's of Kilkenny.

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'John Henry Foley -
Sculptor of the Empire'
was co-written by Turtle
and aired in 2008. Foley's best
known works include the
Albert Memorial in London,
Sir James Outram in Calcutta
and various statues
Daniel O'Connell,
Lord Gough,
Henry Grattan,
Edmund Burke and
Oliver Goldsmith in Dublin.


John Henry Foley - Sculptor of the Empire
(TG4, November 2008)
Se Merry Doyle's documentary examines the life and works of the controversial Victorian sculptor. Turtle was closely involved as both historical researcher and co-scriptwriter. The film was short-listed for the Best Documentary BIFF Award at the 2008 Magners Irish Film Festival in Boston. The Sunday Independent described it as a documentary that showed 'all the signs of a work that was not just well done, but that needed to be done'. The Sunday Business Post concurred that 'Sé Merry Doyle’s film has put [Foley] in his proper place - on a pedestal - for that’s what he deserves'. See 'Foley's Asia' for more.

BBC News
(BBC 1, October 2008)
Turtle provides the BBC's Mark Simpson with some key thoughts on the fate of the Irish pub.

BBC World
(BBC World, October 2008)
An alternative version of the interview with Mark Simpson.

Ireland AM
(TV3, 10 October 2008)
Turtle and James Fennell explain the ups and downs of the Irish pub trade to Mark Cagney.

The Today Show
(BBC Radio 4)
Turtle's thoughts on the challenges facing the Irish pub industry are aired across the UK.

Saturday Magazine
(BBC Radio Ulster)

Turtle and James pew down in Belfast's Crown bar and talk pubs with John Toal.


Erskine Childers
Turtle weighs in with some family background on one of Ireland's most enchanting Presidents.


Today with Pat Kenny
(RTE Radio One, 19th October 2006)

(RTE One, 8th December 2006).
Turtle and James feature along with Paddy Lowery, a farmner from the Slieve Blooms, and Ginger Powell, the oldest practicing vet in Ireland.

(Newstalk 106)

Ireland AM
(Ocotber 2006)

Seoige & O'Shea
(October 2006)