Since being established in 2011, The Detail has helped to position investigative journalism at the core of the news industry in Northern Ireland.

Our not-for-profit news and analysis website is run by Belfast-based independent TV and online production company Below the Radar, which also owns international feature documentary company Fine Point Films.

The Detail was the idea of Trevor Birney and Ruth O’Reilly, both award winning journalists with experience in print and broadcast, who set up Below The Radar in 2006.

To launch The Detail, they brought together a mix of philanthropic and public finance. In June, 2010, Atlantic Philanthropies awarded £640,000 to fund the new platform and Northern Ireland Screen later awarded a further £150,000. Since then, other organisations have supported individual Detail projects, as the site has gone from strength to strength.

The Detail Editor is Steven McCaffery and the Deputy Editor is Kathryn Torney.


We take great pride in creating strong, interactive, well-written content which includes text, video, photography, animation and graphics.

Among our multi-award winning coverage to date are important investigations into health, education, social issues and the justice system.

Our political reporting and analysis is well respected and well read.

The Detail has also pioneered data journalism in Northern Ireland, analysing large volumes of data and reporting in-depth on issues which include ambulance response times, academic achievement, suicide deaths, domestic violence, welfare reform and gun ownership.


We draw inspiration from across the Atlantic where platforms such as the Pulitzer Prize winning ProPublica.com are creating high-quality public interest journalism. ProPublica publishes stories to its website but also works along with broadcasters and newspapers who are able to draw on their work without cost.

In London, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism has built relationships with the major UK brands in news and current affairs.

In Dublin, Storyful.com cuts the wheat from the chaff on web coverage of the big international stories of the day.

And in Scotland, The Scottish Review challenges the established views of the mainstream media.

We are looking to build relationships with news colleagues in Northern Ireland and beyond. Our focus is always on strong, committed journalism centred on matters of public interest, be they contemporary or historic.

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