For many years now Clontarf has had famous residents. Bram Stoker is perhaps the most famous of all. The creator of Dracula was born at number 15, the Crescent, Marino in 1847. The legacy of this novel is still seen in the films and books that have resulted from the famous Count. His work is still appreciated today and his memory kept alive by the noted historian Dennis Mc Intyre who runs a Summer School and society dedicated to his works.
In Politics Sean Dublin Bay Loftus was lord Mayor of Dublin from 1995/6
In the sciences, the former Taoiseach and President of Ireland the late
Mr Eamon De Valera invited the Nobel Laureate and physicist
Erwin Schrödinger (see nobelprize.org)to Ireland to establish the ” Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies” and Prof. Schrödinger resided on Kincora Road from 1939-1956 near the medieval village close to Clontarf Castle.
Pantomime has been a great favourite of the Irish people for many years and Maureen Potter, who lived in Vernon Drive, has brought tears of laughter to audiences from home and abroad for nigh on fifty years.
Tears of a different kind were brought to us by the film director Neil Jordan, a past pupil of Belgrove National School and Saint Paul’s College, in the film The Crying Game, which dealt with the political issues of its time.
Director, Neil Jordan
Distinguished actor, Academy Award winner and member of the Abbey Theatre, Barry Fitzgerald was born on Vernon Avenue and whose best performances were alongside John Wayne and Maureen O’ Hara in the ” Quiet man” and Bing Crosby in “Going my Way”, for which he won his Oscar.
In the world of dance, Clontarf’s Moya Doherty is renowned throughout the world as being the choreographer of the ‘Riverdance’ show which has travelled the globe, and is partly responsible for the renewal of global interest in Irish traditional song and dance.
R.T.E., our national broadcaster, has made some other Clontarfites famous; Marty Whelan, Joe Duffy and Eileen and Mick Dunne. Eileen is a regular newsreader at lunchtime on R.T.E. 1 and her father Mick was a sports reporter most noted for his reports on the G.A.A. and the late Séan Ó Síocháin, former secretary of the G.A.A. was also resident in Clontarf. A current sports reporter is Colm Murray ( died 30/07/2013)
who can also be seen on the R.T.E. news.
RTÉ Newsreader Eileen Dunne
The opera theatres of the world have been graced by the beautiful contralto voice of Bernadette Greavey former pupil of the Holy Faith Convent, Belgrove Road.
No greater honour can an individual receive than to represent his or her country at international, provincial, or county level in sport. At county and provincial level Clontarf has produced many fine gaelic footballers. In 1983 Clontarf’s Jim Ronayne won an All Ireland medal with Dublin. Alongside him in that team was another Clontarf resident, Brian Mullins, who was winning his fourth medal in nine years. In golf, the legendary Christy O Connor, made his home in Clontarf in 1959 and is still here to this day.
The Murphy brothers Andy (d. 28/12/11) and Michael are also renowned for their golfing abilities and for years represented Ireland on the world stage. Both Clontarf Cricket and Rugby clubs, located on Castle Avenue and Clontarf Lawn Tennis Club (Oulton Road) successfully compete at the highest levels in their respective sports. In soccer Clontarf has been represented internationally by Paddy Ambrose and Tommy Eglington.
And we cannot forget Ireland’s most recent sporting hero, rugby’s Brian O’Driscoll who scored a hat-trick of tries in Ireland’s first win against France away from home in 28 years. Brian holds the record for captaining the Irish Rugby Team the most times,50, and was selected to captain the Lions team to New Zealand in the Summer of 2005. Returning to literature the names of Pat Ingoldsby and Christopher Nolan whose books and poetry may be found on the shelves of leading bookstores. Another author, Catherine Dunne, again a past pupil of the Holy Faith, is receiving critical acclaim for her works ( In the Beginning and A Name for Himself published by Jonathan Cape.) in both Ireland and Europe.
While the youth of Clontarf have been successful in their own fields they are to numerous to name, we acknowledge them and applaud them and no doubt they will come to prominence in the not too distant future..
The Picture of Eileen Dunne is courtesy of R.T.É.