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Trish Gallagher is so busy working on her husband's campaign that she does not hear us arrive at campaign headquarters on Stephen's Green.

She rushes downstairs apologising profusely.

Dressed in a teal long-sleeved dress, paired with black tights and elegant courts, Trish appears to be taking the stress of a tooth and nail presidential campaign in her stride.

Not bad for a woman the polls say stands a big chance of being our next First Lady.

So what is the relationship like between candidate and spouse as they hit the hustings?

Trish freely admits she likes to "let Sean think he's the boss".

The 37-year-old from Kanturk in north County Cork who has been dubbed Gallagher's "secret weapon" is taking the pressure of long days and nights working on the campaign in her stride.

Thankfully, she says, her previous role as a sales rep for Vichy Skincare (L'Oreal) across Munster, has prepared her for the tough race to the Aras.

"I would have been on the road travelling five days a week, living out of a suitcase and staying in hotels a lot, putting in a lot of hours, so it really prepared for this," she insists.

Trish can't imagine being the first woman to live in the Aras as a first lady in over two decades but she confides that if Sean were elected, she would certainly like to make it her own, perhaps by raising a family at the presidential home.

"We would both love it if we were blessed with children," Trish confesses.

"If it happened, it would be great, no matter where -- at the Aras or anywhere else -- it would just be wonderful to be parents and have children.

"I think we definitely want to have more than one child. Maybe two. Maybe three," she adds laughingly.

While the thought of babies running in the corridors of the Aras brings a smile to her face, Trish admits that she hasn't had time to think carefully about what the move to Dublin would entail.

"It's very exciting but when you haven't seen it and you don't know what everything will be like, it's hard to know what you would do.

"I would certainly like to put my own stamp on it -- what that would be, I don't know.

"We still have a week to go so we're a long way off, but if we do [end up living there], I would ensure to make it a home, and in doing that, I would bring every single family photograph."

It is clear that at home, Trish is very much the nurturer, who does the cooking "because Sean doesn't have any culinary skill" and maintains the house, but but she likes to "let him think he's the boss".

Far from intimidated by his tough persona on Dragons' Den, the petite brunette had never heard of Sean until friends explained he was a judge on the show, and she refused to look him up on Google. "Before I met him, I wouldn't have watched Dragons' Den," she explains.

"I had heard of the programme but when Sean Gallagher was mentioned to me, I had no idea who he was and what he looked like.

"I insisted before we met that I wouldn't be doing any background searches on him because I wanted to meet him for the person that he is , as opposed to having this opinion formed from seeing him on the television.

"But he did [look for her on the internet], he found me on Facebook and he told me about it before he met me.

"He told me that on the phone that he'd seen my photograph on Facebook," she recalls with a smile, suggesting that he had been quite pleased with what he had seen.

Sean got Trish's number from a mutual friend who thought they would perfect for each other.

After two phone calls, he convinced her to meet him in person and he made no secret that he felt he had found his "soulmate". "I would agree with that," Trish says.

"I think it was probably one of the first things that we both said to each other, that we had both found our soulmate -- it was lovely."

Sean was previously married to Irene McCausland but the marriage ended in 1999. Trish is glad that he eventually found her and she explains that he had been very honest with her about his romantic history and that it was never an issue.

"It happens. Sadly, marriages , relationships do break up but everybody deserves a second chance."

Trish's genuine warmth undoubtedly endeared her to the businessman but she believes that it is their shared values that have made their relationship such a success.

"I think we have both experienced loss in our lives and I think for both of us it has probably changed our outlook on life."

"We both come from very humble beginnings, family and friends are very important to both of us."

Trish grew up on a farm with her six siblings and her parents Noreen and Connie who, she says, taught her "strong work ethics".

"We were sent out to work on the farm as soon as we got back from school. Back then, in the 1970s and 1980s it was very difficult, my mom and dad worked really hard to literally put food on the table for us so I would understand where a lot of people are now -- struggling."

Because of her family history, she empathises with the concerns of the public and if she likes to think that it would help her in her possible future role as the president's wife.

"I really genuinely love being out and about meeting people, I love connecting with them, hearing their stories."

It's also important to her to support Irish trade and she has used her glamorous image to promote local designers.

"When you're at home there is nothing better than putting on the denims and the tracksuit and curling up on the couch but I would always have been very fashion conscious.

"I would be a big supporter of Irish designers and I have worn items by Carraig Donn, Deborah Veale and [milliner] Aisling Ahern."

Sean's glamorous other half favours high street stores for day wear such as Reiss or Coast, where she bought the green dress she wore during the Herald interview.

Besides for her careful fashion sense, Trish's enviable figure has undoubtedly contributed to her sophisticated image.

She reveals that she has always had a passion for sport and even once considered pursuing this interest in her career.


"I grew up across the road from the local golf club in Kanturk so a lot of my childhood was spent on the course.

"I played competitively as a juvenile and later, after leaving school I went to Kinsale and learnt how to teach sailing and windsurfing there.

"I still do a bit of sailing and golfing, but now I would go to the gym three times a week.

"I love exercise because you feel good mentally and physically.

"Sean is quite sporty as well so I don't need to push him."

When they need to get away from it all, the pair go for walks on the beach bear their cottage in Blackrock, Co Louth or they go hiking.

Trish explains that this "love for nature" helps "ground" them and "slows down the pace of life", and so the Aras's leafy location is bound to bring them yet another source of contentment.