Isle of Man research inspires historical play

Research undertaken at the Centre for Manx Studies was the basis for a play which has completed a successful run in New Zealand.

Dr Jennifer Kewley Draskau wrote The Sinking of Immaculate O’Shea after researching world war internment in the Isle of Man. After the sinking of the Lusitania by a German U-boat, more than 25,000 ‘enemy aliens’ –  many of whom had lived in Britain for years – were sent to the island by the British Government and held in two camps at Douglas and Knockaloe near Peel until 1919.

Set in a Liverpool community during the First World War, the play portrays three women who have to come to terms with tragedy as historic events threaten to destroy the family.

It was from the Manx fishing port of Peel that the first boat to reach the survivors came. The Wanderer saved 160 people and towed two lifeboats to safety.

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