John Bishop gets a fairytale lecture in Cork

John Bishop gets a fairytale lecture in Cork
CSN lecturer Shane Lehane is to feature in new ITV series, John Bishop's Ireland seen here in the grounds of UCC.

A NEW series featuring comedian John Bishop as he learns about Irish folklore is to premiere on ITV.

The Liverpudlian travelled around Ireland learning about the mythical side of our country’s past.

As part of the series, Bishop met with Cork lecturer Shane Lehane, who has been teaching at Coláiste Stiofáin Naofa for over 30 years. The comedian sat down with Lehane in UCC to learn about fairies in Ireland and became captivated by what he was told.

Lehane said: “When most people think of fairies, they think they are dealing with a happy and amusing topic.”

He continued: “However, the reality is that fairy belief in Ireland is allied to some of the most serious and disquieting aspects of our cultural inheritance. It involved the subjugation of certain groups and individuals, the systematic abuse of women, and the widespread practice of child neglect and infanticide.

“John Bishop came to interview me with the popular, Disney-like view of fairies in mind, but as the interview progressed and the seriousness of the topic unfolded, he became more and more interested. He was fascinated that despite the years of progression, there are still remnants of fairy belief in Ireland in the 21st century.”

So impressed by what he learned from his interview, John then sat in on the lecture Shane gave in UCC later that day.

The course director of the Cultural and Heritage Studies course in CSN is set to feature heavily in the upcoming series and was even referenced during the Scouser’s comedy routine when he performed at Dublin’s 3Arena last year.

Speaking about his interview with John, Shane said: “I have rarely come across someone so intensely interested in a topic and so easy to get on with.”

John Bishop’s Ireland premieres on ITV on Friday, April 26 at 8pm.

  • For more information about the Cultural and Heritage course at CSN, visit

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