2018 in photographs: 30 poignant images from an eventful year
This year will be remembered by many as the year of the infamous Cervical Check scandal, which has affected over 200 women directly, as well as their families and friends.
For others, it was the extreme weather that continued to hit global headlines in 2018 - with the US experiencing its third in a consecutive series of above-average Atlantic hurricane seasons and Ireland battling Storm Emma with record snowfall in February and March, as well as a blistering heatwave in June and July.
The world lost some talented people - notably Cranberries singer Dolores O'Riordan, much-loved Irish author Emma Hannigan and Swedish DJ Avicii.
Alas, Ireland's housing crisis is no closer to a solution, with a record number of families homeless and the demand for new-builds reaching a new high.
Meanwhile, the country voted 'Yes' in the abortion referendum after an emotional campaign and 30 years of divisive debate, and the Pope visited a changed Ireland for the first time since 1979.
The #MeToo movement continued into 2018, with the world watching the Brett Kavanagh-Professor Christine Blasey Ford Senate Judiciary Committee hearing and thousands protesting against a complainant's choice of underwear being the subject of scrutiny in a Cork rape trial.
We've looked back at the biggest events of the year, both in Ireland and abroad.
Here are 30 poignant images from an eventful year, let us know if you have your own notable moments to include.
January 22, 2018: The coffin of The Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan arrives at Saint Ailbe’s Church, Ballybricken. The 46-year-old was found dead in a London hotel room the week before.
Hundreds of people gathered at the rural Co Limerick church to say goodbye to a singer renowned for her distinctive voice.
February 24, 2018: Ireland was affected by a cold wave, dubbed the Beast from the East, in late February, bringing widespread unusually low temperatures and heavy snowfall to large areas.
The cold wave was combined with Storm Emma which caused significant damage to homes, schools and businesses. Above is a snow-covered Cork Airport during the double hit.
In March, data firm Cambridge Analytica hit the headlines after it was reported it had accessed data from 50m Facebook users during the 2016 US presidential campaign without the users' permission.
Above, Alexander Nix, CEO of Cambridge Analytica arrives at the offices of Cambridge Analytica in central London.
On March 3 Irish author Emma Hannigan passed away following an 11-year cancer battle. Friends, family and fans bade a final farewell at a packed service at Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Church, in Foxrock, Dublin. Pictured are momentoes of the much-loved author's life.
Fire fighters battle a blaze at the Metro Hotel in Ballymun, north Dublin in March. Over 60 firefighters were at the scene and dozens of families left homeless after the incident.
All four defendants in the high-profile Belfast rape trial are found not guilty on all charges in March. Ulster and Ireland rugby player Paddy Jackson was acquitted of rape and sexual assault. Speaking here outside the court, Mr Jackson thanked the judge and jury for a fair trial. Photo: PA
In scenes reminiscent of the infamous days at the height of the Celtic Tiger property boom, desperate house hunters queued outside the sales office of a new development in Dublin 15 in the hope of securing a property in April.
April 21, 2018: Fans of world-renowned DJ Avicii (Tim Bergling) gather for a minute’s silence in Stockholm. The DJ passed away on April 21 at the age of 28. His death was not treated as suspicious. His family wrote in a statement; 'He could not go on any longer'
April 25, 2018: Vicky Phelan and her husband Jim leave the Four Courts after the €2.5m settlement of their action for damages. Vicky (43) was given incorrect test results for cervical cancer. Her bravery to dismiss a confidential agreement was the beginning of the Cervical Check scandal and over 200 women discovering they'd been given incorrect results. Photo: Collins
May 19, 2018: The world watched as Britain's Prince Harry and American former actress Meghan Markle tied the knot in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle in the United Kingdom. Meghan wore a dress by British fashion designer Clare Waight Keller, artistic director of the fashion house Givenchy.
May 19, 2018: A massive appeal is launched for missing Filipino student Jastine Valdez (24). Here members of the Defence Forces search for Jastine Valdez’s handbag at Puck’s Castle Lane. Tragically, she had been abducted and murdered by Mark Hennessy who was later shot by gardaí during an operation. Photo: Colin O’Riordan
May 25, 2018: Pro-choice voters celebrate the result of the referendum on abortion in Dublin. The 'yes' campaign won with 66.4pc of the vote. President Michael D. Higgins signed the referendum bill into law thereby repealing the Eighth Amendment in December. Photo: REUTERS
June 5, 2018: Grandfather and boxing enthusiast Bobby Messett loses his life in a shooting at the Bray Boxing Club. Peter Taylor, father of Olympic gold medallist Katie Taylor, sustains serious injuries and another man is shot in the legs. Here, a garda search team trawl the harbour wall. Photo: Brian Lawless/PA
June 25, 2018: A massive search and rescue operation begins for a 12-member soccer squad and their coach trapped in the Tham Luang cave complex in the northern province of Chiang Rai. Miraculously, all were brought out alive after two weeks by a Navy diver team. Saman Kunan, a former Thai Navy diver, died in the cave mission. Photo: Reuters
June-July, 2018: Will we ever see summer weather like it again? Thousands remained in Ireland to 'staycation' this year as the country saw one of the hottest and driest summers on record. Here, Cassie the dog and Daragh Applebee (3) from Castleknock enjoy the good weather at Portmarnock Beach.
August 4, 2018: Liverpool players Georginio Wijnaldum (left) and Andy Robertson hold a banner after a pre-season friendly between Liverpool and Napoli in Dublin in August. The banner pays tribute to Liverpool fan, Irish man Sean Cox, who was seriously injured in an attack outside Anfield earlier in the year.
August 11, 2018: A photograph depicting the country's homelessness crisis goes viral. The image shows how Margaret Cash and her six children were forced to sleep on plastic chairs in Tallaght Garda Station. They have since been offered a three-bed apartment by the local council.
August 19, 2018: Limerick win the All-Ireland hurling championship for the first time since 1973. The Treaty County beat Galway in the final by a score line of 3–16 to 2-18. . Here, Limerick’s Shane Dowling scores a goal to achieve their eighth-ever All-Ireland title. O’Neills said it struggled to cope with demand from the Limerick public for jerseys. Photo: Sportsfile
August 26, 2018: Crowds gather in the Phoenix Park for the visit of Pope Francis. It was here the Pope led the closing Mass at the World Meeting of Families in Dublin. He also visited Knock during his two-day trip to Ireland . Photo: Danny Lawson/PA Wire
September 13, 2018: An unlikely star of the Presidential Election 2018 was radio presenter Norma Burke, aka presidential hopeful Bunty Twuntingdon McFluff, who presented a satirical bid to Dublin City Council to protest the quality of candidates presenting themselves for 2018 Áras race.
September 24, 2018: A massive sinkhole tears through the pitch at Magheracloone GAA club in Co Monaghan. Five houses were evacuated following the incident and geologists travelled to the site to examine the area.The GAA club was forced to shut with no promise of reopening. Photo: Border Region TV
September 25, 2018: Robbie Keane is pictured at the Liam Miller benefit match in Pairc Uí Chaoimh, Cork six months after the Irish footballer died from pancreatic cancer at Marymount Hospice. The tribute match raised €1.5m, €500k of which was given to charity. Photo: Sportsfile
October 1, 2018; Student Rebecca Carter begins her first day at UCD to study her dream course, veterinary. Rebecca hit headlines after she won a High Court case against the State Examinations Commission to have a marking mistake fixed on time to study her course this academic year. Photo: Kyran O'Brien
October 6, 2018: US Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh participates in a ceremonial swearing in as President Donald Trump, Kavanaugh’s wife Ashley, youngest daughter Liza and oldest daughter Margaret look on in the East Room of the White House. While on the shortlist, Kavanaugh faced historic sex assault allegations which a Senate Judiciary Committee stated were unsubstantiated.
October 10, 2018: Emma Mhic Mhathúna’s coffin arrives at the church in Kerry. Her daughter Natasha carries Emma's youngest son Donnacha, followed by her (Emma's) sons Seamus, Mario and Oisin. Emma was a high-profile cervical cancer victim who spoke out against the Cervical Check scandal before her death. Photo: Mark Condren
October 18, 2018: He started out as the 'nobody' in the race to the Áras, but Peter Casey swooped into second place in the presidential election results after his controversial comments on the Travelling community. After making the comments on Independent.ie's The Floating Voter podcast, the former Dragon and presidential candidate visited the houses at the centre of the debate in Thurles, Co Tipperary. Photo: Mark Condren
November 16, 2018: A new mural appears next to the Bernard Shaw in Dublin, in support of a teenager whose underwear was discussed at a rape trial in Cork. The accused was acquitted of rape, but the world took note as protesters took to the streets of Ireland and a TD held up a thong in the Dáil in protest at discussing alleged rape victims' clothing in court. Photo: Damien Eagers
November 17, 2018: Rob Kearney and co celebrate after beating the All Blacks in Dublin for the first time. A nail-biting game ended in a 16-9 win for the Boys in Green. Photo: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images
November 30, 2018: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is apparently snubbed as world leaders gather for the family photo at the G20 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Many leaders refused to discuss trade with the prince and instead focused on the Yemen conflict and the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Photo: REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
December 22, 2018: A tsunami triggered by a massive underwater landslide on an Indonesian volcano takes the lives of at least 281 people and leaves hundreds injured or missing. Rescuers use heavy machinery and their bare hands to search through debris in the hope of finding survivors Here, rescue workers carry a body bag containing remains of a victim of a tsunami at the beach front hotel in Pandeglang, Banten province, Indonesia.