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Famine's lost potato: knobbly Lumper unites schoolchildren

IT was the 'lost potato' of Ireland's pre-famine days that almost vanished from cultivation after it was destroyed by potato blight.

Now the distinctive knobbly Lumper potato is helping to forge relationships between schoolchildren in Co Antrim with the launch of a cross-community education campaign.

The project, which officially launched this week, will see P5 and P6 pupils from Glengormley and Cushendall working together to plant, nurture and harvest Irish Lumper potatoes in a raised bed in the school grounds, whilst learning about the history of the Irish Famine.

The Irish Lumper is believed to have been cultivated all over Ireland prior to 1840 and was identified as the variety of potato ruined by potato blight.

After almost disappearing, the Irish Lumper was re-grown, starting in 2008, by Michael McKillop of Glens of Antrim Potatoes.

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