Last gasp of the Celtic Tiger, as builders take a morning break on Pearse Street, Dublin in August, 2009. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times 2:56

Everybody wants to know when the government will really ease up on austerity and let us live a little. The latest official figures – showing sparkling(...)

Ukip leader Nigel Farage (right) welcomes Mark Reckless to the Ukip annual conference at Doncaster racecourse in south Yorkshire. Photograph: PA

Every September, thousands of horse- racing fans gather in Doncaster for the St Leger, the world’s oldest horse race and the final classic of the Brit(...)

 Dennis Kimetto of Kenya poses on the podium after winning the 41st BMW Berlin Marathon and setting a new world record. Photo by Boris Streubel/Bongarts/Getty Images

Kenya’s Dennis Kimetto smashed the marathon world record in Berlin on Sunday, winning in a time of two hours, two minutes and 57 seconds to knock 26(...)

Tadhg Kilbride (2), from Dunshaughlin, Co Meath on the third and final day of the National Ploughing Championships at Ratheniska, Co Laois. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

The Leader of the Opposition stands in a marquee, in the middle of a farm, at the height of Ireland’s biggest agricultural showcase. He has an importa(...)

Mayor of Boston Marty Walsh with fomer taoiseach Liam Cosgrave in Carna, Co  Galway, yesterday.  Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

In the crowded marquee in the small Connemara village of Carna, there was a flutter of surprise when the strainséir, the well-known politician from el(...)

The mayor of Boston, Marty Walsh, visited NUI Galway  where he met  college president  Dr Jim Browne   (right) and a group of Boston College Study Abroad students, including Morgan McDonald (left) and Amanda Beusse. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

The mayor of Boston has met IDA and Irish-American business leaders to explore commercial opportunities on both sides of the Atlantic. Mayor Marty Wal(...)

Festival fun: the South By Southwest music, film and technology festival in Austin earlier this year – “Keep Austin Weird!” has become a catch-all calling card for the city which attracts musicians and software coders, political liberals and start-up entrepreneurs. Photograph: Darrell Craig Harris/Getty Images

Austin revels in its kooky status and the Texan capital’s slogan “Keep Austin Weird!” has become a catch-all calling card for musicians and softwar(...)

Irish Roots

I was recently involved in researching the family tree of Marty Walsh, the mayor of Boston, as part of the mother of all Irish festivals, iFest Boston(...)

Marty Walsh has dual US and Irish citizenship and grew up in a household in Boston where Irish was spoken. Photograph: Gretchen Ertl/The New York Times 2:26

A beaming Marty Walsh declared “Tá mé go maith” at Shannon airport this morning as he was given a rapturous welcome on his first visit to Ireland as m(...)

Boston major Marty Walsh during his election campaign last year. photograph: jim davis/boston globe via getty images

Marty Walsh, the new mayor of Boston whose aircraft was due to touch down in Shannon at about 6am this morning, is most welcome in the country of his (...)