Tuesday 21 November 2017

Maeve Binchy left her friends one-third of €10m estate

Maeve Binchy
Maeve Binchy
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

ACCLAIMED author Maeve Binchy gave one-third of her €10m estate to friends, former colleagues, charities and a popular Dublin golf club.

The novelist, who died in 2012 at the age of 72, left two-thirds of her money and properties in Dublin and London to her husband Gordon Snell, who she married in 1977.

The other third is to be divided between relatives, 18 friends and charities including the Marie Curie Memorial Foundation and Saint Luke's Hospital.

Binchy also gifted €10,000 to 29 individuals and groups including the Foxrock Golf Club.

The best-selling author claimed to have re-written her will at least 40 times during the course of her life, proudly stating she was a "great will maker. I've made a will every year since I was 21."

Throughout the years, Binchy made note of items that would have particular resonance and relevance to her closest friends.

She left Moira Armstrong a "bishop's chain" as Armstrong had frequently complimented her on the eye-catching piece.


Eunice Bailey of Rathgar was left a round silver tray as Binchy suspected "she will know the names of the lawyers inscribed thereon".

Della O'Clery received a set of hand-cut glass decanters which are to be raised in a toast to Binchy within the next three months.

Former colleague Mary Maher was left Binchy's collection of literary magazines The Bell. Maher said receiving the pile of precious magazines was "wonderful and fantastic".

The novelist, whose books have sold more than 40 million copies, had her will witnessed by Donal Finnegan, the owner of her local pub in Dalkey, Finnegan's.

Binchy was paid a record €62,000 advance for her first novel 'Light a Penny Candle', which was published when she was 42. She went on to outsell Irish literary figures including Oscar Wilde, James Joyce and Seamus Heaney.

Irish Independent

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