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Dr. Joan Byrne Collection: Home

About the Collection

Collection Ref.:              IE BL/LH/B
Title:                             Dr. Joan Byrne Collection 
Dates:                             1958 - 1987
Level of description:     Item
Extent:                           113 items
Administrative History:
IE BL/LH/B is the Dr. Joan Byrne Collection (archival collection) held in UCC Library. It came to the library in 2019 via a donation of printed material of the Cork International Film Festival from the Executor of the Estate of the late Joan Byrne. 
Biographical History:
Dr. Joan Byrne (1929 - 3 November 2017) was was raised in Ballymurphy, Co Carlow and educated in St Mary's College in Arklow. She subsequently became a microbiologist and worked at the Medical Research Council from the 1950s onwards, which at that time was based in Trinity College Dublin (TCD) and it was at TCD that she completed her PhD in microbiology in 1971. Dr. Byrne continued working at the Council until her lab closed c.1990.
Dr. Byrne was for many years Honorary Secretary of the Irish Film Society (IFS). The IFS sponsored a prize in the Cork International Film Festival and Byrne was a regular attendee and on that judging committee in the 1960s-1970s.
Dr. Byrne was extremely active in many other spheres: in the Irish Federation of University Teachers, where she was equality officer during the late 1980s / early 1990s. She played Scrabble competitively with the All-Ireland Scrabble Association and was also involved in a range of other interests including the RDS (Royal Dublin Society), the Wexford Opera Festival, Oidhreacht Chorca Dhuibhne (she spoke Irish and several other languages fluently),  Cumann Merrimann, the Byrne-Perry Summer School, the Irish Chinese Cultural Society etc. She was also an intrepid traveller, covering most of western Europe in the 1950s, eastern Europe in the 1960s, and the rest of the world in the next three decades. She died on November 3rd 2017.
This information kindly supplied by the Executor of the Estate of Dr. Joan Byrne. 


The collection contains delegates lists, jury lists, photographs, programmes, newspaper cuttings, film brochures, letters to Byrne and other ephemera relating to the Cork International Film Festival from the late 1950s to late 1980s.

Please note: no arrangement has been imposed on the collection by the listing archivist in order to preserve the (presumed) filing system used by Dr. Byrne. Files contain a mix of all types of material, unrelated perhaps to other material in the file, and in no obvious date order.

Please note: the Cork International Film Festival has changed titles over the years. The festival is referred to in the collection as the Cork Film Festival; the Cork International Festival; the Cork Film International; Cork International Film Festival.

Access & Use

Access: Apply via online Request Form during the opening times of Special Collections and Archives


Finding Aid: Descriptive list (see separate tab above, next to 'Home' tab)

Additional Collection Information

Language: English

Copyright: UCC Library (in the main). Publications may rest with original copyright holder, please check with Archivist.

Useful Websites:       

Cork International Film Festival website 

Cork International Film Festival Archive

Collection Image

Admission Card for the Tenth Cork International Film Festival 12 to 19 September 1965 signed by Joan Byrne






Admission card for the Tenth Cork International Film Festival 12th to 19th September 1965 issued to Joan Byrne for the full eight days (IE BL/LH/B/1/10/1).