Lives Remembered

John Mulcahy: Iconic and innovative figure in Irish publishing

John Mulcahy speaking on RTÉ at the launch of The Sunday Tribune in 1980

JOHN Mulcahy was a hugely influential figure in Irish publishing through magazines including The Phoenix, Hibernia and Irish Arts Review, and at the birth of the Sunday Tribune newspaper.

Born in Australia, he grew up in Co Laois following the early death of his father and worked initially in the financial sector in Canada before returning to Ireland in the 1960s.

He bought Hibernia Magazine in 1968 and forged a reputation for investigative journalism.

Issues put under the spotlight included internment in Northern Ireland, with Mulcahy delivering a petition of more than 100,000 signatures against the policy to Downing Street.

The magazine closed in 1980 but he quickly launched the Sunday Tribune, recruiting journalists including Eamon Dunphy, Tom McGurk and Geraldine Kennedy as the state's first female political correspondent.

Mulcahy left the paper soon afterwards and set up The Phoenix, Ireland's answer to Private Eye, which combined satirical content with investigative scoops.

In 2002 he took over the Irish Arts Review and he was also a published author.

Paying tribute, President Michael D Higgins said he was an iconic figure in publishing whose "contribution to Irish critical and aesthetic thought was innovative and immense".

John Mulcahy died aged 86 in Dublin on September 7. He is survived by his wife Nuala and seven children.

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Lives Remembered