Tuesday 21 November 2017

Brian ploughed a lonely furrow but he always had his family

Lise Hand

Lise Hand

It was usually quite a jolly photograph every year when the Minister for Finance posed for the cameras on the morning of the Budget, surrounded by his smiling family.

Although Bertie was separated from his wife Miriam by the time he was anointed finance minister in 1991, he famously posed with his two young daughters, Georgina and Cecelia. And the tradition carried on up to and including Brian Cowen who stood with his wife Mary and daughters Sinead and Meadhbh when he took over the finance department in 2004.

But then Brian Lenihan arrived into the Department of Finance in the dark days of 2008, and the tradition ended. Instead he cut a solitary figure on Budget Day, brandishing the bound document on the steps of Government Buildings with no sign of his wife Patricia or two young children Tom and Claire.

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