Taoiseach leads tribute to ‘consummate political tactician’ Gerard Murphy, who died aged 73

Former Fine Gael TD for Cork North-West constituency was ‘dedicated public servant’, Simon Harris says

Taoiseach Simon Harris has led the tributes to former Cork North West Fine Gael TD Gerard Murphy, who died on Monday aged 73, describing him as “a dedicated public servant”.

Colleagues remembered Mr Murphy, a sitting councillor, as a “consummate political tactician” who was a key figure in Fine Gael’s successes in Cork North-West for over four decades.

A native of Newmarket in North Cork, Mr Murphy, a postmaster, was elected as a TD for Cork North-West in 2002, taking the seat of his running mate, Michael Creed. He was a member of Cork County Council for almost three decades.

He was noted as a political strategist and regarded as being key to Fine Gael taking and holding two seats in the three-seat constituency throughout the 1980s and 1990s and into the 2000s.


Mr Harris expressed his condolences to Mr Murphy’s widow, Marian, his daughter Trish and son Donnacha.

“Gerard was a dedicated public representative who loved his local areas of Kanturk and Newmarket, serving them with great loyalty, hard work, and distinction. Solving problems and finding solutions for the people he represented was at the heart of everything he did.”

Mr Harris recalled how Mr Murphy was first elected to Cork County Council for the Kanturk Electoral Area in 1992 and subsequently to Dáil Éireann in 2002.

Cork North-West TD Michael Creed said Mr Murphy had been a friend over many years and a key figure in the Fine Gael organisation in the constituency.

“An architect of the many successes in Cork North-West, Gerard was a consummate political tactician. He was driven by the pursuit of progress for his constituents, both at a personal and community level, and leaves a legacy of achievement that is widely recognised,” Mr Creed said.

The mayor of Cork County, Cllr Frank O’Flynn of Fianna Fáil, and council chief executive Valerie O’Sullivan issued a joint statement paying tribute to Mr Murphy. They said he was one of the longest-serving public representatives in Cork county and a lifelong community activist.

“Cllr Murphy will be deeply missed by the Elected Members of Kanturk Mallow Municipal District and Cork County Council, the Executive and Staff of Cork County Council as well as all those who had the pleasure of collaborating with him,” they said.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times