New BBC series to look at Irish mothers forced to give up their babies

New BBC series to look at Irish mothers forced to give up their babies

A NEW TV series looking at Irish mothers who were forced to give up their babies for adoption is to be broadcast on BBC 2.

Ireland's Lost Babies will be presented and led by Martin Sixsmith, the British journalist who brought the story of Philomena Lee to national attention.

The series will investigate the role of Irish Catholic Churches in the adoption trade and will begin from next Wednesday (September 17) at 9pm.

Philomena Lee was forced to give up her illegitimate son for adoption by the Catholic Church in the 1950s. For 50 years Lee tried to find her son, before enlisting the help of journalist Martin Sixsmith.

Last year, Philomena, a film about Lee and Sixmsith’s extraordinary story starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan was released worldwide and won four Oscar awards.

Following the success of the film, Sixsmith was contacted by many other mothers with similar stories.

In his new BBC Two series Ireland's Lost Babies, he investigates the Irish Catholic Church’s role in an adoption trade which saw thousands of children taken from their mothers and sent abroad, often in exchange for money.

Over the course of the show in Ireland and America, Sixsmith attempts to discover what happened to these children and their mothers and to reunite the families before it is too late, as was the case with Philomena Lee, whose son died eight years before she could trace him.