Capital Irish has been broadcasting on Wellington Access Radio since 2003. The show was conceived by Limerick man Tim Collins, who was working in Wellington and saw the need for an Irish radio programme.
Tim later brought Margaret Aitken on board and she became the senior presenter and promoter up until 2012. Margaret brought charm and life to Capital Irish and managed to acquire a great team of Irish people from various parts of Ireland.
The programme includes Irish news, local events and activities with an Irish flavour, as well as interviews and live music from visiting Irish musicians. It also includes book and movie reviews and on occasion some political views/reviews. Capital Irish has interviewed many Irish Celebrities over the years the most prestigious being the former Irish President Mary McAleese.
Our presenters come from all walks of life and each generation is represented!
Capital Irish airs every Sunday from midday-12.30pm.
If you would like to contact the team, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org, and check out their Facebook page.
Presenter: Alice Paul
From Co. Monaghan...7 miles from Carrickmacross and 11 miles from Castleblayney – the area is known as Corduff. Patrick Kavanagh is our area’s claim to fame!
I came to Wellington in 1985 with Brendan and our sons and have lived in Lower Hutt since then. I was introduced to Capital Irish by my dear friend the late Neasa Scanlon about 8 years ago, and have loads of shows under my belt at this stage. I really take great pride in presenting my show and love interviewing guests, researching topical news items from Ireland as well as keeping a close eye on the Irish music scene. I feel privileged to be able to bring the Irish community closer through my programme.
The most enjoyable programmes for me are the ones where I have musicians in the studio. Alan Doherty the world famous Irish flutist comes on the show every time he comes to perform in Wellington! Over the years Seamus Begley, Pauline Scanlon, Tola Custy, Gerry Paul and a host of other great musicians have brought their talents and charm to Capital Irish.
My vision for Capital Irish is that we will flourish in the digital age and because of this, increase our listenership to a worldwide audience!
Presenter/Producer: Douglas O’Sullivan
I moved to New Zealand, and Wellington specifically, in 2005. While this seems like a long time it has passed quickly as time flies when having fun. Lots of fun. This city has held a firm grip on me from its geography to the people you meet and friends you find forever. I could not think of anywhere else to be.
My show usually evolves out of a theme of sorts, which is usually discovered the night before when researching. I usually wing it a bit. However I love finding Irish music which speaks to me and hopefully the audience, whether it be modern or traditional. I try and mix things up.
Being a part of the Capital Irish team has played into a boyhood dream of being on the radio and I am very grateful to the team and the opportunity extended.
For me, as one of the editors of the shows, my favourite times are listening and learning to the many stories and topics of information brought to the studio by our great team.
Presenter: Finbarr Murray
Originally from Corran Bui, Contae Mhaigh Eo, I first came to New Zealand on a working holiday visa in 2005 and moved permanently in 2013. Wellington reminds me of Galway, where I lived for many years. Not too big, by the sea, cultural capital, but with bigger hills! NZers are a friendly bunch.
When you listen to my show, you're likely to hear all sorts of music from Irish musicians, from classical to hip-hop via folk, trad and rock. News from back in Ireland including sports, politics and the arts. TV shows and films of Irish interest get a mention. Might throw in a cupla focal and a plug for the Wellington Grupa Comhra, occasional get-together of Irish-speakers in the area.
My first show with Alice Paul with special guest Rose of Tralee Maria Walsh was one of my favourite Capital Irish moments. Off air, Christmas meet up with fellow presenters and hearing tall tales from the likes of Daniel McCaffrey and Jim Friel.
Presenter/Producer: Marian Grealis
I’m from Louisburgh, Co Mayo and I first came to New Zealand on a working holiday visa in 2005. I moved permanently in 2011.
I love that Wellington is small enough that when I meet someone new, we're likely to know some of the same people. I joined a choir in 2017 and discovered a relative of Alice Paul's is also a member!
When you listen to my show, you're likely to hear a selection of stories from some of the local newspapers back home (the Mayo News always features heavily!) and an eclectic mix of Irish music. Some days I'm in the mood for a bit of trad, other days I feel like listening to rock/pop. You could hear Sharon Shannon, Thin Lizzy, The Corrs, and Van Morrison all in one show!
My favourite moment from Capital Irish was in December 2014, when I interviewed two of the main actors from the Wellington Irish Society's production of Playboy of the Western World. They offered some great insights into the play and we had quite a few laughs!
Presenter: Edel Sweeney
My home town is Kenmare Co, Kerry and I first arrived in on a months holiday in October 2012 touring around the North and South Islands. I loved it so much that I moved permanently to Wellington in March of 2014. My favourite things about Wellington are the people and the terrain, I love hiking and drinking and it suits both purposes perfectly!
I’m new to the show, just joined in June 2017, so when you listen to my show, you're likely to hear someone sill learning the ropes! I am aiming for a mix of news, music, sport, and good banter. I play with the Wellington and Hutt Valley GAA club, so no doubt you’ll be hearing about our glorious victories!
My only Capital Irish moment thus far has been the 2017 AGM, so I haven’t had time to find a favourite just yet. :)
Presenter: Andrew Kerr
Originally from Portlaoise, Andrew has lived in Wellington since 1995 after initially backpacking his way to NZ for a 3 month stay. After discovering the joys of Wellington, he has made it his home and never regretted it for a day.
He was lucky enough to be able to make music a full time job for the best part of 15 years and was a part of ‘Jacky Tar’ who toured and the length and breadth of NZ and Europe. They also released 3 albums over that time I.e
Jackie Tar - Rovin' Journeyman - YouTube
In more recent times, he works as an ESOL teacher while continuing his love of playing music in various incarnations. More recently he can be found in duos and 3 piece bands on regular occasions around Wellington.
Andrew Kerr and Alan Norman showreel recording - YouTube
Andrew has just started hosting Capital Irish and looks forward to sharing his favourite tunes from the ‘aul sod and some random verses and anecdotes that have lodged themselves in his memory.