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Dublin: 3 °C Monday 16 December, 2019

29 of Ireland's greatest national treasures

Icons. The lot of them.

PRESENTED IN NO particular order…

1. The man who does the voiceover on the Brennan’s ads

IMG_1043 Source: tssltd

Otherwise known as Bill Golding, the owner of the most golden voice in Ireland.

2. Panti Bliss

90381592 Source: Sam Boal/

The reigning Queen of Ireland, and with good reason.

3. The lad who slipped on the ice on RTÉ News

insta Source: finnstertrax/YouTube


4. Brendan Gleeson

The Walworth Farce photocall Source: PA Archive/Press Association Images

At this point, Brendan Gleeson is kind of like Ireland’s Dad.

And we love him for it.

5. The “Ah here, leave it ouh” lady

grimes Source: Today FM/YouTube

Few Dubliners can claim to have coined a phrase as immortal as “Ah here, leave it out!” but Ann Grimes can.


6. Padraic from Moone Boy

padraic Source: Sky 1/YouTube

“The big ‘C’ got him. He got hit by a car.”

Oh Padraic, you ticket.

7. Marian Keyes

Do we really need to explain why? Read her books, follow her on Twitter and bring a little joy into your life.

8. Daniel O’Donnell

2013 Ireland's Deaf and Hard of Hearing 'Hidden Hearing Heroes Awards' Source: Liam McBurney

It doesn’t matter if the British public don’t appreciate you, Daniel, because we almost certainly do.

9. The girl from the Barry’s Tea ad

download (2)

“Is this a date?”

10. And the lad who said, “Hiya Kate! It’s me, the guy from the bar”

download (3) Source: meadowsirl/YouTube

“No, honestly it is.”

11. Joe Duffy

90285653 Source: Sam Boal/

Joe Duffy is basically Ireland’s agony aunt/crusader. Not an easy job when you consider how much we love moaning.

12. The “Stand Clear, Luggage Doors Operating” man

Gone but not forgotten.


13. Graham Norton

Graham Norton in the Radio Times Source: Ian West

Whether he’s doing a jig in a caravan or holding court with the world’s most famous celebrities, Graham Norton is never anything short of a delight and we’re proud to call him one of our own.


14. Jean Byrne

download (1)

Because who else could work the Xena: Warrior Princess look while presenting the weather? Nobody.

Also: Jean Byrne has the most soothing voice in Ireland.

15. JohnJoe Brennan from the Toy Show

johnjoe Source: RTÉ/YouTube


<3 <3 <3

16. Twink (and Dustin the Turkey)

Cinderella - The Panto Source: Julien Behal

Anyone who saw her go toe with Joanne McNally on Republic of Telly on Monday night will know that she’s still got it.

As for Dustin? No list of national treasures would be complete without him.

17. Amy Huberman

Instagram photo by Amy Huberman * Sep 25, 2015 at 12:25pm UTC Source: amy_huberman

For being talented, lovely and always willing to share these hilarious tidbits from her everyday life.

18. Vincent Browne

00125048 Source: Laura Hutton/

Sure, he can be cranky, but just watch the video of Vinny leading a crowd in an Olé, Olé, Olé chant and try not to have your heart warmed.

19. Anne Doyle

90245897 Source: RTE/

No explanation necessary.

20. Robbie Keane

robbiekeane Source: RTÉ/YouTube

Football achievements aside, Robbie Keane deserves to be on this list for making this kid’s life on the Toy Show alone.

21. Brian O’Driscoll

Rugby Union - RBS Six Nations - France v Ireland - Stade de France

Sorry, remember his contributions to the rugby team? Remember this photo? Enough said.

And sure, you couldn’t have Amy without Brian.

22. Paul O’Connell

Rugby Union - Paul O'Connell File Photo Source: PA Wire/PA Images

(Even if his gumshield makes it look like he has spinach in his teeth.)

23. Bosco

bosco Source: mistermisfit/YouTube

For being every Irish kid’s secret BFF.

24. Mr. Tayto

Coppppeerrrrssss!! Wore my best jacket & I'm still in the queue at @copperfacejacks ! #Coppers #TaytoSwag #MrTayto Source: mrtaytoireland


25. Sinead O’Connor

AmfAR Inspiration Gala - Los Angeles Source: AP/Press Association Images

Nothing and nobody compares to our Sinead.

Watch this video of a  21-year-old Sinead performing Mandinka at the 1989 Grammys and feel your heart swell with pride.

26. Jedward

Eurovision Song Contest - Azerbaijan Source: AP/Press Association Images

The Grimes twins have squirreled their way into our stone cold hearts and we’re never letting go. (Also, Lipstick is still a banger.)

27. Peig Sayers

My bae'. #Peig #Sayers #Bae #beure #gaeilge Source: smokedsammon

Ah, Peig.

28. Mary Black

90145741 Source: Sasko Lazarov/

For bringing joy to Irish Mams.


29. And finally… Michael D. Higgins

We’re just going to say it: we have the best President.

Love you, Tiny Wizard President.

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About the author:

Amy O'Connor

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