Joe Mahon visits Caledon Mill

Published Monday, 21 July 2014
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Joe Mahon makes the first of two visits to Caledon, Co Tyrone, in the next episode of Lesser Spotted Ulster.

Joe Mahon visits Caledon Mill
Lesser Spotted Ulster's Joe Mahon. (© UTV)

He travels to the picturesque village of Caledon, nestled in the Clogher Valley on the banks of the River Blackwater, where he visits the derelict Caledon Flour Mill and marvels at the still-standing colossal Beam Engine which powered the mill.

Nineteenth century entrepreneur and local hero, John Charles Smith, transformed the Mill into the successful Caledon Woollen Mills venture - manufacturing blankets, flannels, coatings and knitting yarns.

Joe hears the remarkable story of the Victorian businessman's unlikely partnership with an innovative nun who was determined to relieve the poverty around the area of Foxford, County Mayo.

In a village steeped in history, Joe learns that due to rebuilding work carried out by the second Earl of Caledon during the early 1800s, much of the local infrastructure was designed by the famous Regency architect John Nash. This included an integrated school for girls, demonstrating some early examples of cross-community initiatives in the area.

Also, while navigating his way around the local area, Joe uses a 1609 map to search for the former 17th century O'Neill castle in the middle of a lake which no longer exists.

This series will see Joe discover a whole range of new fascinating stories, remarkable people and stunning vistas across the country, many of them from places that he had never set foot in before.

Viewers can join in the conversation by tweeting along with @utv during the show using the hashtag #LesserSpotted.

Lesser Spotted Ulster is broadcast on Friday 25 July at 8pm on UTV.

© UTV News
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