Bad Bridget is a masterpiece of social history and true crime, showing us a fascinating and previously unexplored world. Ireland in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was not a good place to be a woman. Among the wave of emigrants from Ireland to North America were many young women who travelled on their own, hoping for a better life. Some lived lives of quiet industry and piety. Others quickly found themselves in trouble.

Elaine Farrell and Leanne McCormick, talk about their bestselling book and tell the strange, funny, and often moving stories of these Bad Bridgets, young women who left their impoverished homeland and ended up as sex workers, thieves, kidnappers and killers.

Dr Elaine Farrell is a Reader in Irish Social History at Queen’s University Belfast, specialising in nineteenth and early twentieth-century Ireland. Her research focuses on crime history, as well as women’s and gender history. Dr Farrell joined the History Department, Queen’s University in 2012.

Dr Leanne McCormick is a Senior Lecturer in Modern Irish Social History and the Director of the Centre for the History of Medicine in Ireland (CHOMI) at Ulster University. She is an accomplished researcher and has made significant contributions through her extensive publications.

Terms and conditions

  • Tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable, so please check all details carefully when booking.
  • Please be advised that under 18s must be accompanied by an adult.
Dates and times
North Down Museum



Getting to Bad Bridget

54.653204616251, -5.6682069

North Down Museum

Town Hall
Castle Park Avenue
BT20 4BT
United Kingdom

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