Trinity and UCD speakers win ‘Irish Times’ debate

Editor Kevin O’Sullivan presented awards after lively debate at Maynooth University

The 55th Irish Times debate final has been won by speakers from Trinity College Dublin and UCD.

The individual winner was Eoin MacLachlan of UCD L&H who proposed the motion: “This house believes that the fourth estate failed the Irish people in their hour of need.”

The team winners were Ronan O'Connor and Hugh Guidera of TCD Phil, who also proposed the motion.

Irish Times editor Kevin O'Sullivan presented the awards at Maynooth University which hosted what proved to be a lively debate, with some sharp criticism of media organisations including the sponsors.


Runners up were William Dunne of TCD Hist and NUI Galway pair Shane Cummins and Conor Kelly.

Other team finalists were UCD Independents Susan Connolly and Muireann O'Dwyer; and Peter Murphy and Robert MacCarthy of UCD L&H .

Other individual finalists were Matthew Collins of TCD Phil; and Christopher O'Reilly of the Solicitors' Apprentices Debating Society of Ireland.

The debate was chaired by Fine Gael MEP Brian Hayes who said Ireland's collapse was down to failings on political, banking and regulatory fronts "and for people to think otherwise they are fooling themselves". He said the press could not dictate to society, although this did not mean it was above criticism. Mr Hayes said there was "too much commentary", too much trivia and too much consensus, along with a dearth of international coverage in the Irish media today.

For a full report on the debate, see Monday's Irish Times

Joe Humphreys

Joe Humphreys

Joe Humphreys is an Assistant News Editor at The Irish Times and writer of the Unthinkable philosophy column