People from Northern Ireland who embrace a different way of living were the focus of two recently aired programmes on UTV earlier this month.

The aptly-named ‘Living off Grid’ is presented by UTV reporter Emma Patterson who meets several local people who have turned their backs on conventional living.

She explores how and why people have chosen to live this way; what prompted the move; how they overcome daily challenges; and what motivates them.

For some of those she speaks to, it’s a financial decision in a time when mortgage rates are rising, and for others it's to protect and preserve the environment.

From boats to eco farms, thatched cottages to vans, Emma takes the viewer into their worlds.

One of those featured was Margaret Gallagher (81), who has lived in the same 300-year-old cottage outside Belcoo for her whole life.

Margaret said: "I was born in this house and if God is gracious enough he'll let me die in it. I love it to bits. It's moulded around me and part of me.”

Despite having to collect her own water every day, and storing firewood, she says: “Everyone has challenges but I don't call those challenges. Things are never worth worrying about, because they'll always work themselves out."

Also featured were a young couple who have made Lough Erne their home. Sophie Durand and Josh Boyd moved from Co. Armagh to the lakes of Co. Fermanagh.

The newly-engaged couple gave the TV programme an insight into managing life and work on their narrowboat, 'Qisma', as part of the series.

"We fell in love with the idea of boating and 'tiny living' during our uni years in Stoke-on-Trent, famous for its narrowboat building sites. Stoke was full of narrowboats that passed by on our way to class.

"It was then that we realised this could be a way of living for us – no mortgage, fewer possessions and more freedom."

They continued: "We have been living on Qisma for almost two years now and have loved that we can take our home and go anywhere. The strangest part is, we always feel like we have forgotten something when we move from place to place!

"From sharing our lives on social media, our journey living on a boat and sharing the good and the bad, we have had the chance to know so many incredible people from Fermanagh and beyond.

"We love to share as much knowledge and advice as we can about boat living from two people who are pretty amateur at the whole thing."

You can follow Sophie and Josh's adventures via @cruisingqisma on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube and Facebook.

To see their story, and Margaret's, ‘Living Off Grid’ is available to see on the UTV Player.