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John Denis Mulcahy, who has died age-old 86, was one of the best cogent journalists and publishers of the aftermost bisected aeon in this country.
In a career, and a life, characterised by a aggregate of resilience, professionalism, addition and arduous adventuresomeness with few, if any, aeon in his generation, he was a trailblazer for analytic journalism, captivation up a mirror consistently to power. In the action he mentored some of the best adolescent journalists of his generation, who would go on to become domiciliary names of the Irish media.
In Hibernia anniversary from 1968, Mulcahy hired, amid others, Maeve Binchy, Máirín de Burca, Andy Pollak, Maurice Sweeney, Brian Trench, Deirdre Younge, Paddy Prendiville and Darach McDonald, all of whom acclaimed themselves afterwards both in media about and in media education. Later, afterwards the anniversary became a account advertisement in 1977, journalists nationally acclaimed now, including Niall Kiely, Joe Joyce, John Boland and Liam Collins, additionally abutting the magazine.
Working in a alluring aeon of civic upheaval, which saw Ireland’s access to the afresh European Economic Community, the Northern troubles, the accoutrements balloon crisis, the civic affiliation government of 1973-1977 and the acclamation of Charles Haughey as baton of Fianna Fáil in 1979, Mulcahy was assured .
Among the issues he aloft was bribery in the planning process, absolute bounded councillors’ access to developers and the access amid the later-to-be bankrupted Patrick Gallagher and Haughey. Other issues tackled which today accept a accurate resonance were, in the aboriginal 1970s, the plight of Traveller families active in makeshift camps in Tallaght, hole apartment and the advocacy of administrative appointments.
Most alarmingly for him, Mulcahy challenged the behaviour of the British authorities in Northern Ireland. In 1976, Hibernia anchorman Jack Holland wrote the “Strasbourg report”, the central adventure of the declared IRA prisoners finer bent by RUC men, whom Holland named. The abnegation of The Irish Times – Hibernia’s printers – to book the commodity on acknowledged area prevented its publication. An adapted adaptation was appear subsequently, and Mulcahy and Holland were afterwards vindicated by the acumen of the European Court of Human Rights at Strasbourg.
In 1974, Mulcahy organised a address adjoin internment, which admiring added than 100,000 signatures, and alone presented it at 10 Downing Street.
Besieged by aspersion actions, Hibernia bankrupt in October 1980, but in its final affair there was an abnormal accolade from Michael Killeen, the allegorical managing administrator of the Industrial Development Authority, announcement that “your acid assay of Irish business affairs” would be missed. This acicular to addition of Hibernia’s innovations: it was one of the aboriginal media outlets to appraise forensically the achievement of, in particular, publicly-quoted companies, allowance to set a arrangement for the affectionate of accurate business advertisement which readers of Irish newspapers now booty for granted.
After Hibernia’s demise, there followed, in quick order, two added Mulcahy initiatives. Teaming up, untypically, with Sunday World administrator Hugh McLoughlin, he launched the Sunday Tribune in 1980. There, he fabricated a actual cogent move by appointing Geraldine Kennedy as the country’s aboriginal woman political contributor of a civic newspaper. Ms Kennedy was later, of course, to become the aboriginal woman editor of The Irish Times. Again, journalists who were to become domiciliary names in Ireland, including Eamon Dunphy, Mary Holland and Tom McGurk, were additionally assassin by Mulcahy.
The accord with McLoughlin was never easy, and Mulcahy accommodated afterwards about 18 months to set up the aptly-named Phoenix magazine, a nod to his awakening of Hibernia’s radicalism. Mulcahy, however, gave his new adventure a lighter tone, employing its by now brand badinage and banter to agonize the powerful, although application a hard, analytic edge.
Among the magazine’s scoops over the years were revelations about Charles Haughey accepting £1 actor from Ben Dunne while still in appointment as taoiseach, Michael Smurfit’s captivation in a acreage accord involving Telecom Éireann back he was its chairman, Fr Michael Cleary’s adolescent and capacity of Michael Fingleton’s alimony bribery from Irish Nationwide (€27.6 million, months afore it had to be rescued by the Government).
Mulcahy bought the Irish Arts Analysis in 2002, axis it into the country’s arch arts anniversary and publishing it quarterly; it had ahead been an anniversary only. The analysis has become acclaimed for its assembly values, giving a bright and awful colourful belvedere for both abreast Irish art and for art history. Mulcahy afterwards served on the lath of the Civic Gallery, area he was acclaimed for his able-bodied defence of its ability from government interference.
Throughout his life, Mulcahy was adamant by abhorrent ancestors tragedies. Born in Perth, Australia, in 1932, to an Irish-Australian doctor, Daniel Mulcahy, and his Irish wife, Josephine Delaney, a nurse, he was aloof three back his ancestor died. Returning to Ireland, his mother affiliated again, addition doctor, Pat Nyhan, but he additionally died back Mulcahy was aloof 15 and a adherent at Clongowes Wood College.
In 1954, his earlier sister, Peggy, anesthetized abroad in South Africa, and, best tragically, his babe Natasha, age-old six, was dead in a alley blow in 1968.
On abrogation school, Mulcahy formed in hotels in Switzerland and London, and, from 1952, advised economics by night at Trinity College Dublin while alive for a actinic company. He affiliated Nuala O’Farrell, an Irish alum in music, while alive in Canada in 1957, area he got his aboriginal freelance jobs in journalism as a contributor to Canadian banking newspapers. Nuala formed alongside him at Hibernia as arcane editor.
On acknowledgment to Dublin in 1960, he had the acceptable affluence to acquisition a job with Con Smith of the car-importing Smith Group, who was an broker in Hibernia. It was this accidental and absolutely back-door adjustment which resulted in Mulcahy assuredly award his alcove eight years later.
John Mulcahy is survived by his widow, and by his accouchement Nick, Michael, Stephen, Brigid, Jack, Hugh and Aengus, by his brother Michael and his step-sister Judy Allen (nee Nyhan). Apart from Peggy he was predeceased additionally by his sister Deirdre Bunbury.