Culture

Y Gwyll / Hinterland inspires first ever Ulster-Scots crime drama

24 Jun 2021 2 minutes Read
Y Gwyll / Hinterland. Picture by S4C / BBC

Cardi-noir police procedural series Y Gwyll / Hinterland, first broadcast in the Welsh language on S4C, has inspired the first-ever Ulster-Scots crime drama.

Screenwriter Ewen Glass, from County Antrim, Northern Ireland, has penned a script for a new crime series, Sang Toon, based in his home town of Ballymoney in the 1830s.

The script for the murder mystery has been picked up by BBC Northern Ireland and production is expected to get underway next year.

He told the Belfast Telegraph that Y Gwyll / Hinterland showed that people were now used to watching bilingual crime dramas and that said it would be interesting to make an Ulster-Scots series that celebrated the culture.

“What I was keen to do was make a prestigious Ulster-Scots drama, like the Welsh language crime drama Hinterland,” he said.

“If we want to represent that culture and language, we need to find a fresh take and engage with people who speak it and those who don’t even know they are speaking it.”

He added: “The Ulster-Scots language comes from my part of the world and there are brilliant opportunities to get work made in that register.

“There are enough people already who are too interested in the politics of it but this is more of a personal, cultural thing.”

He added that while one Ulster-Scots film, Stumpy’s Brae by Chris Baugh, did exist, this would be the first TV series.

Ewen Glass’s latest project, Little Kingdom, a wartime drama set in Slovakia, is now available to stream on Amazon Prime.

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Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
3 months ago

Broadcast media, which has done so much to weaken the non-English languages in the British Isles, is clearly now being seen as a tool for strengthening those languages. This new series is a welcome example of that new approach.

Alan Reilly
Alan Reilly
3 months ago

Ulster-Scots is not a language. It’s badly pronounced and written English. Scouse is more of a language than this rubbish. How about the BBC actually puts the same time, money and effort into supporting Cymraeg, Gaeilge and Gaidhlig instead of trying to appease a few salty “pied noir” in the northeast of Ireland who are using this nonsense dialect to try to obstruct the progress of Irish? Or to put it another way, not a single person on this site (or anyone who can speak and read English) would struggle to understand “Ulster Scots”. Try that with Cymraeg, Gaeilge or… Read more »

Alan Reilly
Alan Reilly
3 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reilly

A couple of examples:

Written above the door at the “Ulster-Scots” Museum:

Godis Providens Is My Inheritans

A classic “Ulster-Scots” piece of literature:

Paddy McQuillan’s Trip Tae Glesco

A more recent book in “Ulster-Scots”:

Fergus an tha Stane o Destinie

Send your translation answers on a postcard to win a prize. 🙄

HeddGwyn
HeddGwyn
3 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reilly

It does it has BBC Alba.

RTE does the Gaelic in Ulster.

Alan Reilly
Alan Reilly
3 months ago
Reply to  HeddGwyn

Nope, TG4 does in Ireland, of which Ulster is part.

But spending money on this drivel is a waste which could be better put to use in upping the funding of, y’know, channels and programming which actually do support real languages like Welsh, Scots Gaelic and Irish Gaelic.

It’s a bit unfair that one sub-language” of English, “Ulster-Scots”, gets funding whilst others which are far more widely spoken like Scouse and Geordie don’t get a look in. I suppose Coronation Street and EastEnders cover Manc and Cockney though.

Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
3 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reilly

Alright, “this dialect”, then.

Last edited 3 months ago by Wrexhamian

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