Irish Association

The Council of the Association has met and deliberated on ways of maintaining contact and activity in the context of the current corona crisis. As a result, a number of communications will be issued shortly.

Welcome to the Irish Association

The principal objective of the Irish Association is the promotion of communication, understanding and co-operation between all the people of Ireland, both north and south.

The Association is non-party political and non-sectarian in character.

Mission Statement

VISION: Reason and goodwill to take the place of passion and prejudice in Ireland, north and south.

MISSION: To make a real contribution to the growth of reconciliation, mutual trust and respect through providing an impartial arena for dialogue and debate.

- Act as a bridge to and between cultural, economic & social issues and interests across the island;
- Encourage & develop broader and deeper analysis, debate and awareness at all levels of Irish society;
- Continually recreate platforms and processes to enable effective forms of cultural, economic and social relationships to emerge on the island of Ireland, north & south;
- Act as an impartial and membership-driven forum for the shared concerns of the wide range of organisations and individuals involved in north-south affairs.

The Council 2020

Stephen Douds (President)
Donal O'Tierney (Treasurer)
Alan Burnside
Rosemary Dunlop
Mary Gethins
Chris McGimpsey
Pauline Murphy
John Neill
Ruth Taillon
Brian Walker
Trevor Williams
Bob Collins (Past-President)
Dermot O'Doherty (Secretary)
Daltún Ó Ceallaigh (Internet Manager)
Seán Barrett
Christopher Bruce
Susan Hedigan
Phil Killeen
Dorothea Melvin
Gillian Travers


The Irish Association for Cultural, Economic and Social Relations was founded in 1938 by people in Belfast and Dublin who felt that the political division of Ireland should not also sever the cultural and other links between north and south.

It was initiated by liberal unionists in the north, but they got a ready response in Dublin from people who wanted to keep up contacts in spite of the border.

The Association endeavours to get people from all differing traditions in Ireland to meet and to provide opportunities for discussion.

The Association itself holds no political views but welcomes people of all political persuasions.

Since 1938, regular meetings, seminars and conferences have been organised.

The Association has continued to the present day with members north and south determined to continue the aims of the founders.

Increasing Membership

We are anxious to increase our membership, so let us have the names and e-mail addresses of anyone that you think would be interested in our mission.


2020 News

St Patrick's Day Lunch - CANCELLED
Tue 17th March, 12.30 for 13.00,
Wellington Park Hotel,
21 Malone Road, Belfast.
Guest Speaker: Rev Dr John McMaster,
Pres. Nominee, Council of State,
'Remembering and Relationships'.
For details, click here.

Dublin Winter Lunch
Sat 25 Jan, 13.00,
Wynn's Hotel, 35 Abbey St,
Reflections on Children of the Troubles,
Joe Duffy, RTÉ
For details, click here.