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RTÉ nature series wins major award

1 of 1 Presenter Derek Mooney, Barry Donnellan, Director of Photography and Colm Crowley, Head of RTÉ Cork
Presenter Derek Mooney, Barry Donnellan, Director of Photography and Colm Crowley, Head of RTÉ Cork

The RTÉ Cork series Secrets of the Irish Landscape, presented by Derek Mooney, has won a Gold World Medal at the New York Festivals' World's Best TV & Films Awards.

Broadcast on RTÉ One last May, the three-part series saw Mooney follow in the footsteps of Robert Lloyd Praeger, Ireland's greatest naturalist and author of the classic book The Way That I Went.

The series was produced by RTÉ Cork in association with the National Botanic Gardens and University College Cork, and was backed by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.

It is currently on air in Australia and Canada.

Speaking at the awards show, which was held as part of the US' National Association of Broadcasters' Convention in Las Vegas, Mooney said: "I love making nature programmes. It's part of who I am. I'm genuinely thrilled we've won this award, not just for myself but [for] the crew and for RTÉ.

"When we think of science and nature programmes, we tend to believe that only the BBC can make them. But this proves we can do them just as well, if not better.

"It's fantastic that a very Irish story, about how we got our landscape, has found such a universal resonance and connected with others around the world, and that we also got the chance to celebrate the work of one of Ireland's greatest scientists on the world's stage. I was aware of Praeger's work, but it wasn't until I journeyed in his footsteps that I fully appreciated the man.

"The success of this programme on the international stage will, I hope, encourage RTÉ to develop this genre of TV.

"There is a market for natural history programmes in Ireland and there is plenty of subject matter for TV producers to focus on - bring it on!"

Head of RTÉ Cork, Colm Crowley, said: "It is a real honour to represent RTÉ at this prestigious festival, which has given us a chance to showcase the work of Irish television on an international stage.

"Winning gold at this event is a fantastic tribute to the RTÉ Cork team that put the show together, and a special thanks to Derek and his radio team, who also contributed hugely to the making of this series.

"Also special thanks to the Chief Series Consultant, Matthew Jebb, Director of the National Botanic Gardens, who was centrally involved in developing the series."

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