Top 12: What do Rosanna Davison, Eve Hewson and Ruby Walsh have in common? We list the talented children of Ireland’s famous faces

12 Phelim Drew Phelim, son of the mighty Dubliners frontman the late gruff-voiced Ronnie Drew, is a well-known actor. After launching his career in the Oscar-winning film My Left Foot, a string of film roles followed, most recently playing the troubled priest Father Liam Plunkett in Fair City. Of course, he enjoyed throwing illicit looks at Carol, the soap’s house siren.


Phelim Drew as Fluther Good in the Abbey Theater production of Sean O’ Casey’s The Plow and the Stars directed by Sean Holmes at The Lyric Hammer in London, England.

11 Lottie Ryan
While the descendants of famous faces often make their names in the spotlight, sometimes it’s under a slightly different roof. For example, if your parents are actors, they might be drawn to singing. Not Lottie Ryan. Her father was the inimitable voice of 2FM for decades and a familiar face on Network 2/RTÉ2, and she quickly took over the baton. After spending five years honing her presentation skills at college, she first went to New York to work behind the scenes on hit television series The good wife. An accomplished dancer (she won Dancing with the stars in 2020), Ryan has maintained an unwavering presence in Montrose following the death of her father Gerry when she was 23. Meanwhile, one of her brothers, Rex, is a successful actor and her middle sister, Bonnie, is gaining recognition as an influencer.


Lottie Ryan receives an award at the Irish Film and Television Awards at the Convention Center Dublin on February 12, 2011 in Dublin, Ireland.

10 The Kusacks
All of the Cusack sisters – Sinéad, Niamh and Sorcha – inherited their parents Cyril and Maureen’s penchant for pedaling. Her two brothers, Pádraig and Paul, preferred to stay behind the scenes instead, dominating the production and directing departments. Half-sister Catherine from Cyril’s second marriage to Mary Rose Cunningham is also a stage actress and enjoyed a long-running role in Coronation Street.


Daughter of musician Chris de Burgh, Rosanna Davison had a successful modeling career which resulted in her being crowned Miss World in 2003.

9Rosanna Davison
Given his somewhat small stature, the fact that Chris de Burgh helped produce the Amazonian goddess Rosanna Davison is nothing short of miraculous. Her successful modeling career led to her being crowned Miss World in 2003. Since then she has demonstrated her skill in a range of performative facets before finding her niche as a writer specializing in nutritional therapy.

8 Roisin O & Danny O’Reilly
Singer Mary Black has to be very proud of the achievements of her children, two of whom have independently made an impact on the Irish music scene. The soloist Róisín O toured with her new album Brave across the country, while brother/Coronas frontman Danny is currently hosting RTÉ’s latest music-driven show The main stage. Her cousin Aoife Scott, daughter of Frances Black, is also a successful singer.

7 The Walshes
There was Ted first. Then he had Ruby, Katie and another Ted. They are all legendary jockeys and well respected in the horse racing world.


Saoirse Ronan attends the press night performance of ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’ at the Almeida Theater in London, England.

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6Saoirse Ronan
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Saoirse Ronan is the rarest thing, a star who has managed to eclipse her parents’ fame. Featuring both Monica and Paul (AKA Anto Collins off Beautiful city) from the acting world, Saoirse was sure to get “the virus”, which is consistent with her experience visiting film sets – such as Veronica Guerin and Of the devil – when she was a child.

5 The Brogans
Bernard Junior – he with the powerful brows and muscular arms best known for lifting the Sam Maguire Cup – followed in father Bernard Senior’s giant shoes. With the latter amassing three All Ireland medals as well as a crucial goal in one of the most famous games of all time (1977’s storied semi-final match between Dublin and Kerry), some might say Bernard Jnr and his brother Alan had to make it a lot of to crawl out from under daddy’s shadow. And they did. Alan also collected three All-Ireland medals while Bernard earned a number of titles including seven All-Irelands and four All-Stars.


Nicolas Roche on stage during the Monaco BeKing 2021 Charity Gala at the Fairmont Hotel on November 28, 2021 in Monte Carlo, Monaco.

4 Nicholas Roche
In line with extraordinary Irish sporting families, Stephen Roche is a name synonymous with the world’s finest cyclists. In his most glorious year, 1987, he became the second person ever to win the coveted cycling trifecta of the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and Road Worlds. Undeterred by his father’s seemingly unsurpassed achievements, Nicolas has become a notable and revered sportsman himself, becoming twice national champion and regularly finishing in the top 10 stage winners at the Vuelta a España; and representing Ireland at the 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympics. He is also another candidate featured on Dancing with the stars.

3 The Hewsons
Say what you will about Bono, his children are undeniably a credit to him and his wife Ali. While many rock star children rose to prominence in the celebrity party scene, the Hewsons quietly honed their respective talents behind the scenes. Eve has proven to be a compelling actress, starring in films and TV series such as This must be the place, The lights and behind her eyes. Jordan is pioneering tech and activism as the founder of Speakable, and youngest brother John is said to be quite the comedian. Meanwhile, Elijah cultivates a following with his Inhaler bandmates.


Cecelia Ahern attends the An Post Irish Book Awards at Clayton Hotel on November 27, 2018 in Dublin, Ireland.

2 Cecelia Ahern
Daughter of a certain former Taoiseach, Cecelia has managed to achieve the near impossible – to rise to the top of Ireland’s vat of talented women writers. With two of her books that have been filmed in particular (PS I Love You and Love, Rosie), and she in turn co-creates and produces Samantha Who?plus the recent TV adaptation of ROARAhern always seems to have something exciting in the works.


Brendan Gleeson participates in a panel discussion during a first look screening of Mr. Mercedes Season 2.

1 The Gleesons
Whether for their impressively bushy beards or their theatrical prowess, Brendan’s four sons continue to blaze a trail across screens big and small. Between joining cutting-edge dramas like top boy (Brian), banging out some tunes (Fergus) or writing her latest novel/play/screenplay (Rory), there’s hardly a moment when a Gleeson isn’t doing something impressive. Sure, the other one (Domhnall) was a villain
War of stars. Top 12: What do Rosanna Davison, Eve Hewson and Ruby Walsh have in common? We list the talented children of Ireland’s famous faces

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