1982: Anatomy of a year


JanuaryKildare TD Charlie McCreevy (pictured) is expelled from the Fianna Fáil parliamentary party without a vote after criticising party leader Charles Haughey as “unfit to lead”.

McCreevy told journalists his only regret was the part he had played in the conspiracy that led to the ousting of Jack Lynch as party leader.

Garret FitzGerald’s government, which had taken office only seven months earlier, is defeated by one vote on its budget proposals. The Dáil is dissolved and a general election fixed for February 18th.

In the Irish charts this month: The Land of Make Believe by Bucks Fizz


Corporal punishment is banned in Irish schools under regulation by minister for education John Boland. A circular issued to schools says teachers should treat pupils with kindness combined with firmness; corporal punishment is banned and ridicule and sarcasm should not be used. Teachers in breach of the regulations will be guilty of conduct unbefitting a teacher and will be subject to severe disciplinary action.

One of Dublin’s most venerable institutions, the Royal Hibernian Hotel on Dawson Street, closes.

General election result (February 18th) : Fianna Fáil, 81; Fine Gael, 63; Labour, 15; Sinn Féin the Workers Party, 3; Others, 4.

Ireland win the Triple Crown for the first time since 1949 by beating Scotland 21-12, outhalf Ollie Campbell leading the charge.

They also take the Five Nations championship but are denied the Grand Slam when beaten by France.

Topping the charts this month: Oh Julie by Shakin’ Stevens


The country’s first crematorium is officially opened at Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin. It will cost £50 for a cremation, making it £32 less expensive than burial in Glasnevin Cemetery.

The 23rd Dáil elects Charles Haughey as taoiseach by a majority of seven. His supporters in the vote include Independent TD Tony Gregory, who in the previous days had negotiated the so-called Gregory agreement with Haughey under which a major inner city development plan was to be implemented.

Fine Gael TD Richard Burke, right, accepts Haughey’s invitation to become Ireland’s European commissioner, in what was seen as a Haughey “stroke” to bring about a byelection which Fianna Fáil hoped to win and therefore strengthen its Dáil position. (But Fine Gael retained the seat in the byelection)

In the Irish charts this month: The Lion Sleeps Tonight by Tight Fit


A summons alleging that Haughey’s election agent Patrick O’Connor tried to vote twice in the general election was dismissed at Swords District Court.

The Eurovision Song Contest, the 27th in its history, is held in Harrogate, England.

German entrant Nicole wins the competition with A Little Peace.

Ireland’s entry was Here Today, Gone Tomorrow by the Duskeys. It was placed 11th out of a field of 18.

Work begins on the Cork-Dublin natural gas pipeline from the Kinsale gas field to Poolbeg. Gas was discovered off the Old Head of Kinsale in 1971 and production began in 1978. The 240km pipeline cost £45 million; natural gas became available to the capital in 1983.

One of Ireland’s highest profile property developers, the Gallagher group headed by 30-year-old Patrick Gallagher, goes into receivership.

Topping the charts this month: Seven Tears by Goombay Dance Band.


The Sunday Tribune’s 50 per cent owner Hugh McLaughlin agrees to buy out the 50 per cent stake held by the Jefferson Smurfit Group.

Alex “Hurricane” Higgins regains the world professional snooker title with a 135-point clearance in the last frame of the final against Ray Reardon. He won £25,000, compared with £480 when he previously won the title in 1972 (this year’s winner received £250,000).

20,000 people across the country stay away from work to attend a protest march in Dublin following an increase in pay-related social insurance. The government pledges to speed up new PAYE and children’s allowances, which it says will offset PRSI changes for most workers.

In the charts this month: Ebony and Ivory by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder


Golden Fleece wins the Epsom Derby for Irish trainer Vincent O’Brien. It was O’Brien’s sixth and final victory in the most important horse race in Britain and Ireland.

Simon and Garfunkel draw 20,000 people to a concert at the RDS in Dublin. Thirty years later, Paul Simon is still filling Dublin venues, with his concerts at the O2 among the city’s musical highlights this year.

The Sunday Journal ceases publication, the first nationally distributed newspaper to close since the Sunday Review in 1963.

In the Irish charts this month: House of Fun by Madness.