Preview – In Sight of Home: the Iolaire


Having originally aired in Scotland, this documentary about a post-war tragedy is given a wider airing on BBC Four tonight.

HMY Iolaire was a ship that was carrying troops home to the Isle of Lewis who had just survived the horrors of the First World War. However, on New Year’s Day 1919, just as the ship came within sight of Stornoway harbour, the Iolaire sank due to a rising gale. 201 returning soldiers died, 67 women were widowed and 209 children lost their fathers.

Despite this, the sinking of the Iolaire remains unknown to most people outside the area where it happened. This programme shows just how deeply the sinking still affects people, a century after it occurred.

In Sight of Home: the Iolaire is on BBC Four at 21.00.