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Red hot Richard is son of actress


SOCIALIST General Election candidate Mr Richard Boyd Barrett has confirmed that he is the biological son of well-known actress Sinead Cusack.

Tireless campaigner Mr Boyd Barrett is hotly tipped to take a seat in the Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown constituency on a ticket of "people before profit".

It has emerged that he was given up for adoption by the well-known TV and stage actress Sinead Cusack, who is now married to British actor Jeremy Irons. They now have two children and a castle near Macroom, Co Cork.

When contacted by the Sunday Independent this weekend, Mr Boyd Barrett confirmed the fact that Ms Cusack is his natural mother.

"Yes, I can confirm that that is the case, but I don't wish to comment further as it is a family matter," he said in reply to a question from the Sunday Independent. Sinead is one of the famous Cusack sisters, Sorcha, Niamh and half-sister Catherine, daughters of the late Cyril Cusack.

Sinead was also a one-time girlfriend of footballing legend George Best.

Born in February 1948, she began acting in the Abbey Theatre. She went on to star in several movies including Hoffman alongside Peter Sellers and V for Vendetta. Mr Boyd Barrett is 39 years old, which means his mother would have given him up for adoption when she was 20.

But Sinead Cusack and Richard Boyd Barrett (his adoptive name) have had extensive links in their adult lives. Ms Cusack's was a leading signature on the Irish Anti-War Movement's petition to the Government over the war in Iraq. Mr Boyd Barrett chaired the organisation.

On a document addressed to the Government "Say No to War and Occupation - US Military Out of Shannon", dated March 18, 2003, Ms Cusack's signature is second on the list after that of actor Brendan Gleeson. Mr Boyd Barrett's signature is also on the list.

Despite several attempts to contact Ms Cusack this weekend, she was not available.

A long-standing member of the Socialist Party, Mr Boyd Barrett hopes that after the election there will be at least three left-of-centre TDs in Dun Laoghaire Rathdown.

Campaigning as a member of the 'People Before Profit Alliance' he is now expected to strongly challenge the sitting PD TD Fiona O'Malley for the last seat.

He has garnered strong support for his stance against the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown council over the development of the seafront in Dun Laoghaire and high-rise developments from Booterstown to Dalkey, where Cusack herself is originally from.

He said yesterday that the feedback on the doorsteps was extremely positive and that many within the constituency support his largely anti-establishment stance. His role in the anti-war movement and in various other campaigns throughout the south Dublin area, mainly against the council, have helped raise his profile significantly.

"The reaction on the doorsteps has been really good," he said. "I narrowly missed out on the local elections because of transfers, and we are pushing hard to ensure we can capitalise on the support for what we stand for.

This government and council are extremely pro big business and developers, and much of the natural beauty in the country is being lost.However, there are many ofus not ready to roll over and accept it."