Kerri Quinn presents a new BBC Radio Ulster documentary series The Mystery of Mount Stewart
Eight people are lost when a boat sinks on Strangford Lough, April 1895. A new BBC Radio Ulster series dives into the mysterious circumstances surrounding this tragic event.
In the three-part documentary series The Mystery of Mount Stewart, actor Kerri Quinn who is currently appearing in police drama Hope Street, attempts to unravel what happened, by retracing the route the boat took on that fateful day.
“Everything interested me about this story, because I hadn’t heard it before and it is history right on your doorstep. It’s the unknown, it’s the fact they are still looking for answers as to what happened and it still hasn’t been solved.”
Joseph Grainge (top left) standing with members of staff outside Mount Stewart, County Down | © The Estate of the Marquess of Londonderry.
In 1895, Theresa, Lady Londonderry was the foremost political influencer of her day, holding court for part of the year at Mount Stewart house on the shores of Strangford Lough in County Down.
As a treat for her most senior servants, who created dazzling social events for guests at the Mount Stewart estate, Theresa lends them her personal sailing boat.
Historic photograph of the Mountstewart yacht. | © The Estate of the Marquess of Londonderry
The group set sail on an idyllic trip to one of the islands in Strangford Lough, but the boat is never seen again and eight people are missing - presumed dead.
From head cook, Eliza Taunt to house steward, Joseph Grainge, the passengers on the boat worked their way up the Victorian social ladder to become more than just servants. Theresa and her husband described them as friends.
As time passed some of the bodies began to wash up and this fascinating series explores the stories behind these lives lost, how the tragedy impacted the Londonderry family and Theresa’s political aspirations, and what became of the Mount Stewart estate.
The full series of The Mystery Of Mount Stewart from BBC Radio Ulster, is available for listening now on the free BBC Sounds app and website.
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