Saturday, 8.10am


Saturday 13th August

Lee Matthews singer songwriter

In 2013, Lee Matthews became part of the country music scene in Ireland in the Country & Irish genre releasing two albums, A Little Bitty Country in 2014 & It's a Great Day to Be Alive in 2015, plus a string of singles releases. Lee sings in studio the hit of the Summer, The Famer Wants a Wife.

Olympic Games & Tipperary's Greg Broderick

Tomorrow Greg Broderick will enter the arena in Rio on his horse MHS Going Global in the first of 5 showjumping rounds to determine the medals at the Olympic Games in Rio. Suzanne Campbell met up with Greg before he caught his plane to talk about his preparations for the games. We are also joined on the line by Greg's father, Austin Broderick.

Bloody Sunday 1920

Marty is joined in studio by Jimmy Lynch, grandson of James Matthews killed in Croke Park on Bloody Sunday in November 1920. Also on the line is Michael Foley, Sunday Times journalist & author of The Bloodied Field.

Pig Farmer & hurler Shane Fives

This weekend in Semple Stadium the replay between Kilkenny & Waterford in the All Ireland Snr Hurling semi-final takes place & Marty went to visit Shane Fives at his pig farm in Co. Waterford.

Dermot Allen - Irish Pig Society

In studio with Marty this morning is Dermot Allen - Show Secretary with the Irish Pig Society & pig farmer at Winteavern Farm, Baltinglass, Co. Wicklow. Dermot breeds a very rare breed in Ireland, Black Oxford Sandy & Black Pigs. He also has brought one with him into studio this morning to meet Marty!

Saturday 6th August

The full story of Bertha - the world's oldest cow!

We couldn't leave mention of Bertha's Revenge without the full story of Bertha, the world's oldest cow who died just 3 months shy of her 50th birthday in 1993. We bring you this clip of her 48th birthday, celebrated in style by Gay Byrne & a budding young broadcast talent....followed by historian, Turtle Bunbury to complete our story of Bertha.

Ballyvolane House & Bertha's Revenge Gin

Darragh travelled to the 18th century Ballyvolane House earlier this week, outside Fermoy in north Cork - a gorgeous spot that also happens to be making a gorgeous & very unique gin!

Sheep Shearing

During the week Donegal man Ivan Scott broke the world record for number of sheep sheared in 9 hours - 867 - which he achieved in Cornwall England. Darragh spoke to Ivan recently & also introduces 3 sheep shearing men who are going to do sheep shearing live here in Donnybrook, Chair of Ir Sheep Shearers Assoc., Tom Dunne, Aussie Geoff Coller who now lives in Kildare & PRO & Fermanagh man, Stanley Allingham.

Glenasmole in Dublin Mountains

NAMA & the Dept of Arts Heritage & Gaeltacht & the sale of land belonging to NAMA in Glenasmole, Suzanne Campbell went to find out if the sale of the National Parks & Wildlife is the best outcome for those who actually live there. Our food & farming reporter, Suzanne Campbell went to the valley to find out & spoke to sheep farmer, Donie Anderson.

Kilotteran Riding School - Frances Shanahan

For the past 51 years Joan O'Mahoney has been running Kilotteran Riding School on the outskirts of Waterford city. Frances Shanahan met Joan, who gets very attached to her horses & ponies & is reluctant to sell them, especially since the last horse sold became one of our best Irish show horse, Diamond Express.

Saturday 30th July


Anna Jones works as producer and occasional presenter on BBC Radio 4's Farming Today, with whom we work closely, and as a director on Countryfile on BBC TV. She's over in Ireland working on her Nuffield scholarship project.. and Damien talked to her about Brexit and the perception of farming across the Irish Sea.


Michael J. Hurley used to live in Baldoyle Dublin and so he wrote local history. Then he moved to Galway and now writes local history. He outlined to Louise Denvir the history of the old Fair of Turloughmore in Galway and the connection between Baldoyle and Galway races. For more on The Fair of Turloughmore check @LackaghHeritage

Vincent on 3 County Tour - Spot where!

Actually, it's the Cavan County Museum and Savina Donohoe, the Director, with Vincent Woods. Vincent has gone on a 3 county tour to make 3 special radio shows- The County Line - Saturdays at 10am for 3 weeks starting Sat Aug 6. Vincent explains it all to Damien.


Damien went to Cavan ( surprise surprise) to meet Eugene Kiernan, the main man in Brefni Mushrooms. Established almost 30 years ago, with over 250 employees and 80 mushroom growing rooms, they supply 20 Tonnes of mushrooms per week to the Irish and British market.


Vintage are a men's choir from Castlebellingham, Stabannan and environs in Mid Louth. Most of them are farmers or close to the food business, and they sing for fun and to raise money for local charities. One of the main men is Gerry Giggins, known for his beef finishing advice and Farm Tours Ireland busness.

Saturday 23rd July


Tom Arnold from the Irish Institute for European Affairs is in studio to discuss the Climate Smart Agriculture report they have jointly published with the RDS, and the latest EU Commission Greenhouse Gas targets. These targets oblige Ireland to cut agriculture emissions by 30% by 2030.


Jane Shackleton runs the Lakeview organic farm in Mullagh Cavan, and Louise Denvir went to visit her. The farm converted to organic 20 years ago.. and yes they are those Shackletons: Arctic explorer, Ernest is a cousin of her father, Jonathan.


Proud winners and judges at the Orchard Equestrian All Ireland Yearling Filly Championship in Bridgetown With over 130 various agricultural/horse events, county shows and local shows, and a history going back hundreds of years in some cases, you might think Irish shows are in good health. Well, not quite. Michael Hughes is Irish Shows Association  National Sectretary and he deals with every show in the country. Michael Flanagan is a well known pedigree Angus breeder in Moydrum and is deeply involved in the Athlone show which took a hard financial battering this year.


Ireland exports 560 million euro in seafood every year. Mussels are a major part and they are farmed in coastal waters around the country. Quality and safety is controlled by the SFPA -Sea Fisheries Protection Authority. Suzanne Campbell went to Killary Fjord in Mayo, to meet mussel farmer Simon Kennedy, and see an inspection by Brian Nolan, National Shellfish Monitoring Office - backing up the weekly samples by local officer Siobhan Curran.


Cúlcow and Mellow Fig - Could be a bunch of hippies. Cúlcow Artisan Ice Cream is made on his suckler farm in Bannagher, Offaly, by James Kirwan. Hold on, suckler cattle don't produce milk! True, but James takes the milk from other local farms and makes the ice cream on farm. Damien met James delivering ice cream to the new Mellow Out shop in Blackrock Dublin and on the farm in Offaly. Mellow Out is a new outlet close to, and part of, The Mellow Fig.

Saturday 16th July


Now, over to South Wexford where Frances Shanahan paid a visit to John Fortune, currently harvesting his crop of early potatoes . And it’s a very different story to earlier this year, when he was planting potatoes in very difficult conditions, following that incessant rain throughout the Spring.


With Geraldine Gregan - food scientist with O’Connor’s Bakery in Ennis, Ann Marie O' Connor (in white zipped uniform) and Anne Keniry. To Ennis in Clare to find out about the Greening of the Fleadh, by which we mean how the organisers of the Fleadh are taking serious steps to cut down the environmental impact of this huge annual event.. First off O’Connors Bakery, O’Connors are a long established family business in Clare . Karen Foley is the Environmental Awareness Officer for Clare County Council and Chair of the Green Fleadh Sub Committee.


It is said that milking cows perform better with a bit of melody in their lives, so I headed to Pallasgreen on the Limerick Tipp Border to the dairy farm of Pat to check out this theory in the company of 2 and a half tenors.. 2 very tall guys and one slightly shorter.


In Ballylanders in South Co Limerick a widower's desire to give himself ten more years with his young sons has turned into a phenomenal community effort. The 'Shed the Pounds' campaign now has 70 people across the Ballyhoura region battling, parish against parish, to get fit, lose weight & raise money for two children's charities, Cliona's Foundation & the Laura Lynn Children's Hospice. Mairead O'Connor of Grey Heron Media caught up with the group in Kilfinane, as they set out on one of their weekly walks.


Trotting, sulkie racing or to give it the correct names - Harness or STANDARDBRED racing - is enjoying a growth spurt. Vet Peadar O'Scannaill is a fan & he joins Marty in studio this morning.

Saturday 9th July

Swimming in the River Boyne

Later today hundreds of people will gather to swim along the river Boyne. Louise Denvir reports on Darragh McCullough's 'dry run' from earlier this week as he swims along the 2.7 kilometre stretch of river!

Carol Drinkwater - West Cork Literary Festival

Carol joins Damien on the line to talk about All Creatures Great and Small, living and farming in France, her books and her upcoming appearance at the West Cork Literary Festival!

The Galway Garden Festival

Frances Shanahan visited the Galway Garden Festival earlier this week and spoke to Liam O'Meara about the art of air lairing as well as Michael White from Mount Congreve gardens.

Suzanne Campbell - Inishbofin

Food and farming reporting Suzanne Campbell visited Inishbofin to find out all about the island's wildlife, stories and heritage!

Teagasc 2016 National Beef Open Day

We spoke to some of the several thousand famers who attended the Teagasc 2016 National Beef Open Day in County Meath on Tuesday.

Saturday 2nd July

Castlepalooza Music & Arts Festival

Charleville Castle in Tullamore, Co Offaly is a Gothic-style castle playing host to Castlepalooza this weekend. Martin McGlynn went along to savour the atmosphere & met Dudley Stewart, Manager of the Charleville Castle Heritage Trust.

The World Buiatrics Congress

Tomorrow over 2,800 vets, researchers & experts in animal health from 65 countries will meet in Dublin's Convention centre for the start of this year's World Buiatrics Congress. Damien speaks to Dr. Jude Capper, Indep Livestock Sustainability Consultant from BBC in Oxford & on the line is Seamus Sheridan, Agric spokesman for The Green Party.

Martin Ryan beef farmer

Damien speaks to County Wexford beef farmer Martin Ryan about his herd of Hereford cattle, which more & more farmers are switching back to for various reasons.

Frances Shanahan - Food Academy

Over the last decade we have seen the emergence of a large number of artisan food producers, small scale operators who start at local farmer's markets. Once successful expanding into supermarkets. Bord Bia & local enterprise boards have launched a Food Academy. Frances Shanahan visits a local Supervalue store on a recent visit to Cork.

Brexit & NI Farmers

The fallout of the Brexit vote continues to resonate particularly among farmers in Northern Ireland. What is going to happen to the single farm payment, cross border trade etc. Joining Damien on the line is Jim Nicholson, Ulster Unionist MEP & Brid Rodgers of the SDLP & former Northern Agricultural Minister.

Saturday 25th June


10 kilo of butter nearly 2000 years old found in a bog in Cavan. Savina Donohoe is Curator of the Cavan County Museum.


The Dubai Duty Free Derby is on at the Curragh this time of year and Damien headed off to meet one of the top trainers with horses involved. Willie McCreery is based in Kildare not too far from the Curragh.


This week China announced cutting its meat consumption ( Esp beef) by 50% as the environmental damage likely from increased meat production was not acceptable. John Gibbons has been campaigning for sustainable agriculture for many years. Food economist, Ciaran Fitzgerald was head of Meat Ireland til recently and has a slightly different take on this.


Flanagan's Fields Community Gardens and Grow Dome in Rialto in Dublin is making the most of an old derelict space, where the Fatima Mansions once stood. Recently they had a visitor from L.A , Ron Finley. Louise Denvir went Snoop Doggy Doggin around to find on facebook

Saturday 18th June


Shane Long comes from solid hurling stock in Gortnahoe, Tipp.Brenda is there in Hayes Hotel in Thurles talking to James Woodlock, Tipp hurling star and farmer, Teresa Healyclub secretary for Two-Mile Boris Soccer club and Derek O Brien and some of the students of Gortnahoe National School.


While it might seem a no brainer that the UK will suffer some form of negative effect from leaving the EU, Damien found out that some in farming north of the border are convinced that leaving will bring about a new dawn in agriculture. The rather more sober & less nationalistic view is given by Gabriel D'Arcy CEO of Lacpatrick and farmers south of the border.


Frances Shanahan checked out the state of the Irish country house in the company of historian Turtle Bunbury at his family house - Lisnavagh House in Co Carlow. These days his brother,William & wife, Emily run Lisnavagh as an upmarket tourist & event venue.


Pig Racing is back in Arklow shortly and Ciara Fitzgerald has been campaigning against it for some time. This year the organisers have agreed that the piglets can go as pets to anybody willing.


Andrew Doyle is Minister for Food Forestry and Horticulture and Wicklow TD. He joins Damien today in studio.

Saturday 4th June


With 3 weeks now to Brexit, will they leave or remain? This week in Amsterdam there was an informal meeting of Agricultural Ministers. Damien caught up with Agricultural Minister Phil Hogan, for a quick chat on some farming matters.

Saturday 21st May


Maura McElhone found herself in the middle of a farmyard tending to sheep and cattle with absolutely no prior experience. This new life is thanks to her boyfriend farmer but she is also enlightening us to the day to day experience of farming life courtesy of a blog and a column she writes in Irish Country Living in the Farmers Journal.

The Taste of Ice Cream

4 ice creams and 3 Guest Tasters. The ice creams were from Nobo, Glastry Farm (Teelings Whiskey), Cow Pow and Kefi, and the 3 tasters were Marie O'Toole, National President ICA, comedian Alison Spittle and a new DJ, Dave Fanning. Long time collaborator with the show, Louise Denvir, conducted this totally scientific outing.

Chips Off the Old Spud

The humble potato is making a small comeback having declined for many years. Bord Bia and their UK equivalent have a twitter site @TastyPotatoes for their joint marketing campaign. Bord Bia have just appointed well-known TV nutritionist and dietician Aoife Hearn as an ambassador for this campaign,and MIchael Neary joined Damien to explain

More Hens in Shercock

The country's largest chicken processor, Manor Farm,  which processes nearly a million chickens a week is planning to spend 25 million euro over five years to expand to meet demand, with 600 more jobs to come, most of them in Shercock, Co Cavan. Vincent Carton along with his brother Justin own the company which is over two hundred years old

Saturday 14th May

Camphill Community

Parents who have a child with intellectual or physical disability worry about what will happen to them when they pass on. Frances Shanahan reports on Camphill Community Centre

Size Matters

The World's largest pumpkin/vegetable at 2327.7 lbs- 1.09 Tonnes in real weight! Patrick Sullivan and his cousin Michael Byrne are the champion pumpkin growers in Ireland, with personal and Irish records for Pumpkins of 425KG and 311KG .

Farm Accidents

Damien visited the Flynn family farm in Cormaddyduff near Ballyjamesduff in Cavan to talk about the loss of Kieran. Brenda and son Gerry tell a hard story to listen to. Theirs and many other sad stories will be remembered on 26th June in Abbeyleix at the  annual Embrace Farm service.

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