Maeve Binchy, flanked by the actresses Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio (left) and Minnie Driver, at the Irish premiere of the film ‘Circle of Friends’, based on her novel of the same name, in the Savoy Cinema, Dublin, on May 10, 1995. Photograph: Paddy Whelan / THE IRISH TIMES . . .

When we have “ahhhh” pictures in this column, they often feature cute furry animals, small children – or some improbable combination of both. Few of (...)

Portland Bill Lighthouse harbour stormy sea getty images

Let’s get the embarrassing admission out of the way: when I first heard that the inaugural Maeve Binchy Travel Award was open for submissions my in(...)

Lord Mayor of Dublin Christy Burke with Áine Lawlor and Finbar Furey at the Mansion House Dublin. Lawlor and Furey were recipients of the Lord Mayor’s Awards 2015. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Broadcaster Áine Lawlor and folk and traditional musician Finbar Furey are among the recipients of the 2015 Lord Mayor’s Awards for their contributio(...)

Geraldine Kennedy, former editor of The Irish Times, will  present with the Mary Cummins Award at the Women in Media event. Photograph: Valerie O’Sullivan

The third Women in Media conference is this year inviting men to discuss the common challenges and issues that they both face working in the media and(...)

“Donal’s babes”: the Irish Times journalists Maeve Donelan, Nell McCafferty, Mary Maher, Geraldine Kennedy, Renagh Holohan, Gabrielle Williams, Christina Murphy, Mary Cummins and Caroline Walsh. Photograph: The Irish Times

Twentieth-century modernity The “Aeolus” episode of James Joyce’s epic of Dublin life, Ulysses, is set in the office of the Freeman’s Journal (and Ev(...)

Maeve Binchy at the National Gallery of Ireland beside her  portrait  by Maeve McCarthy: “Her novels sold in their millions but before them came her journalism, columns that transported the reader to the front row of a royal wedding, gently explained the reality of mental illness or captured with bitter simplicity the silence of a couple who had run out of things to say. Colour writing at its finest. Light and shade.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Strangers become sisters. A son disappoints his father. A young woman sits, mortified yet dignified as her husband drinks his way through their wed(...)

Brendan O’Carroll pictured with Eva Crean, Stepaside Dublin (right) and Ella Hannon Moss, Mountmellick, Co Laois, at a press conference on Moore Street, Dublin on Monday, announcing him as St Patrick’s Day parade grand marshal for 2015. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times 1:01

Brendan O’Carroll of Mrs Brown’s Boys fame has been named as the St Patrick’s Day 2015 grand marshal, capping off a successful year for the actor and (...)

Róisín Ingle with Gay Byrne in The Irish Times studio

Gay Byrne has said he supports marriage rights for gay couples and expects the forthcoming referendum on the issue to pass.“Yes, I think it’s long ove(...)

David Kelly and Brendan Cauldwell in RTÉ’s 1980 adaptation of ‘Strumpet City’ - James Plunkett’s book  was the most borrowed adult fiction from public libraries in 2013

Strumpet City was the most borrowed book of adult fiction from public libraries last year, new figures show. Library users also elevated Fifty Shades (...)

LT Meade’s A World of Girls, which sold an impressive 37,000 copies, had a huge influence on girls’ school stories of the twentieth century by the likes of Enid Blyton

Imagine if JK Rowling’s name rang no bells in people’s minds 100 years from now. Rowling: so ubiquitous, influential and popular – the thought seems a(...)