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Noel Thomas Lemass (14 February 1929 – 13 April 1976) was an Irish Fianna Fáil politician who served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for Dublin South-West from 1956 until 1976.[1]

Noel Lemass
Parliamentary Secretary
to the Minister for Finance
In office
2 July 1969 – 5 February 1973
TaoiseachJack Lynch
Preceded byJim Gibbons
Succeeded byHenry Kenny
Teachta Dála
In office
November 1956 – April 1976
ConstituencyDublin South-West
Personal details
Born(1929-02-14)14 February 1929
Dublin, Ireland
Died13 April 1976(1976-04-13) (aged 47)
Dublin, Ireland
Political partyFianna Fáil
Spouse(s)Eileen Delaney
OccupationCommercial traveller

Early lifeEdit

Born in Dublin in 1929, Lemass was the son of Seán Lemass, a Fianna Fáil TD, and Kathleen Lemass (née Hughes). He was named after his uncle, a victim of the Irish Civil War in the early 1920s. Lemass was educated at Catholic University School, Leeson Street in Dublin and later at Newbridge College in County Kildare. He didn't attend university, against his father's wishes, instead undertaking business training and later becoming an executive member and branch secretary of the Irish Commercial Traveller's Association.

Political careerEdit

Lemass followed his father into politics in 1955 when he was elected to Dublin City Council. He was elected to Dáil Éireann in a by-election in Dublin South-West the following year.[2] In winning that by-election Lemass delivered a blow to the ruling Fine Gael party whose TD had held the seat for a number of years.

Lemass had to wait until his father retired as Taoiseach for political preferment. In spite of this he was active in a number of political councils and other groupings. From 1966 to 1968 he was a member of the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe. He was also a member of the Irish-British Parliamentary Group and the Irish-French Parliamentary Group.

Lemass was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Finance, serving from 1969 until 1973 and holding responsibility for the Board of Works. In his first year at the Department he served under his brother-in-law, Charles Haughey, and later under George Colley.

When Fianna Fáil lost power in 1973 Lemass was named on the front branch as spokesperson for physical planning and the environment. He held that position until January 1975 when he was dropped from the front bench. Lemass's political career, a career in which he was invariably judged in comparison to his father, was cut short when he died suddenly in 1976.

Private lifeEdit

Lemass married Eileen Delaney in 1950. The couple had four children. Lemass's wife became involved in politics herself when she became a member of Dublin Corporation. She also entered the Dáil following the death of her husband.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Noel T. Lemass". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 13 February 2011.
  2. ^ "Noel Lemass". Retrieved 1 September 2012.
Preceded by
Peadar Doyle
(Fine Gael)
Fianna Fáil Teachta Dála for Dublin South-West
Succeeded by
Eileen Lemass
(Fianna Fáil)
Political offices
Preceded by
Jim Gibbons
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Finance
Succeeded by
Henry Kenny