2003 in Ireland

2003 in Ireland


*January 21 - The Spire of Dublin on O'Connell Street is officially completed.
*February 16 - 100,000 people in Dublin, and 30,000 in Belfast march to express their opposition to the imminent invasion of Iraq.
*April 7 - President Bush of the United States arrives in Northern Ireland for discussuions with British Prime Minister, Tony Blair. He also meets An Taoiseach Bertie Ahern, and the leaders of the pro-agreement parties.
*June 21 - The 2003 Special Olympics World Summer Games open in Croke Park, Dublin.
*August 31 - The remains of Belfast mother Jean McConville, are found 31 years after she was abducted and murdered by the Provisional IRA, who accused her of being a British army agent.
*September 15 - For the first time the All-Ireland Football Final is contested by two teams from the same province. Tyrone are victorious over Armagh in the first All-Ulster Final.
*November 27 - The people of Northern Ireland go to the polls. The Democratic Unionist Party and Sinn Féin make massive gains at the expense of more moderate unionist and nationalist parties.

Arts and literature

*IMPAC Award: Orhan Pamuk, "My Name is Read"


Gaelic games

* All-Ireland Hurling Final - Kilkenny 1-14, Cork 1-11.
* All-Ireland Football Final - Tyrone 0-12, Armagh 0-9.


*Nissan Irish Open is won by Michael Campbell (New Zealand).

Rugby Union

* Rugby World Cup - Ireland reach the quarter-finals of the competition before being beaten by France.
* 2003 Six Nations Championship: Ireland lose only to England, who win the tournament with a grand slam.
* 2002-03 Heineken Cup: Munster and Leinster advance from the pool stage and both are defeated in the semi-finals. The final is played in Landsdowne Road.


*The League of Ireland moves from a predominatly winter season to a Scandinavian style summer season. Bohemians win the transitional 2002/03 season and Shelbourne win the 2003 championship.



January to June

*8 January - Patrick Pery, 6th Earl of Limerick, peer and public servant (b.1930).
*21 January - Tony O'Malley, painter (b.1913).
*23 January - Aodhagán Brioscú, last surviving founder of Irish cultural organisation Gael Linn.
*16 February - Seán Ó Cionnaith, Workers Party of Ireland politician (b.1938).
*25 February - Tom O'Higgins, barrister and judge, Irish Chief Justice, Fine Gael TD and twice defeated Irish presidential candidate (b.1916).
*11 March - Brian Cleeve, writer and television broadcaster (b.1921).
*17 March - Linda Kavanagh, Workers' Party activist and Dublin City Council member.
*2 April - Pat Leavy, actress.
*6 April - Ian Malone, member of British Army's Irish Guards, shot dead in Iraq (b.1974).
*28 May - James Plunkett, novelist, author of "Strumpet City". (b.1920).
*30 June - Constance Smith, actress (b.1928).

July to September

*16 July - James Kelly, former Irish Army officer cleared of attempting to import arms for the IRA in the 1970 Arms Trial (b.1929).
*17 July - Eamonn Leahy, barrister and husband of Cabinet Minister Mary Hanafin.
*28 July - Valerie Goulding, former Senator and campaigner for the disabled (b.1918).
*3 August - Phil Monahan, founder of Monarch Properties Holdings Limited, leaving an estate worth €26.7 million.
*12 August - Kieran Kelly, jump jockey after a racing accident (b.1978).
*14 August - Donal Lamont, former Catholic Bishop in Rhodesia (b.1911).
*19 August - Dennis Flynn, soldier in Canada, Chairman of the Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto (b.1923).
*20 September - Liam Tobin, longtime "Árd Rúnaí Roinn na Gaeltachta" and Irish language campaigner.
*24 September - Tomás MacGabhann, Trade Unionist and Irish language activist..
*28 September - Proinsias Mac Aonghusa, journalist, broadcaster, chairman Bord na Gaeilge, president Conradh na Gaeilge (b.1933).

October to December

*7 October - Frank Roe, former President of the Circuit Court.
*16 October - Ernest Bodell, cricketer (b.1928).
*10 December - Sean McClory, actor (b.1924).
*12 December - John McConnell, former Economics expert, journalist and civil servant.
*27 December - Patrick J. Reynolds, Fine Gael TD and Senator (b.1920).
*30 December - Archbishop Michael Courtney Papal Nuncio to Burundi who was assassinated.
*31 December - Gerald Goldberg, lawyer, Fianna Fáil politician and first Jewish Lord Mayor of Cork (b.1912).

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