28 May-The Riordans

The Riordans was a long running Irish rural soap opera. It was set in a fictional village called Leestown in Co Kilkenny. The Riordans, which was made by RTE (Raidio Telefís Éireann) was actually filmed in Dunboyne, Co Meath and in other locations nearby.

RTE began television broadcasts on December 31st 1961. The station had produced a successful urban soap opera called Tolka Row, the first episode of which was broadcast on January 3rd 1964. Following the success of Tolka Row, RTE decided to produce a Rural Equivalent.

The Riordans was created by Wesley Burrows and James Douglas. The first episode was broadcast on January 4th 1965. The series ran for fourteen years and in all, 600 episodes were made. At the height of its popularity the Riordans attracted over 1.2 million viewers.

Filming of the Riordans was done on location rather than in a TV studio. This was a major innovation at the time. The innovation was later introduced to Britain by Yorkshire Television for the production of Emmerdale Farm. Other productions such as Brookdale, Coronation Street and EastEnders gradually followed suit.

The final episode of the Riordans was shown on RTE television in the year 1979 On This Day.

Straight On or Left or Right to Westmoreland Street Only by National Library of Ireland on The Commons on 1932-05-01 00:00:00

RTE Leyland FG OB Support Van by desomurchu archive gallery on 2008-03-07 14:40:00

 

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