Original Tóstal Council


Dublin Core


Original Tóstal Council


Cork Film Festival, Tóstal, Dermot Breen, Gus Healy, Lord Mayor, Patrick McGrath, City Hall


This is a black and white photo of the ‘Original Tóstal Council’ standing on the steps of the City Hall in Cork. The photo is undated but we can suggest the mid-fifties when Tóstal was inaugurated in Cork.

The Cork Film Festival emerged from An Tóstal (1953-1958), which was a pageant, or festival, held around Ireland to celebrate Ireland’s national image. While this photo does not identify the ten council members we do recognise some of their faces from the archive. A young Dermot Breen stands in the middle at the back – he went on to found the film festival in 1956 and would run it until his death in 1978. Gus Healy (1904-1987) stands on the far left, hands in pocket. He was a Fianna Fáil politician who would later serve Cork as Lord Mayor from 1964 to 1965 and 1975 to 1976. A grey-haired Patrick ‘Pa’ McGrath stands at the centre of the group. He was a Fianna Fáil politician who represented Cork in Dáil Éireann between 1946 and 1956. McGrath served as Lord Mayor of Cork from 1952 to 1956. He took an active part in the Irish War of Independence and was honoured by his comrades by appointing him chairman of the Cork City Old IRA Men’s Association. McGrath died suddenly in 1956 and was honoured by Taoiseach John A Costello in the Dáil, who spoke highly of him in the Dáil Éireann debate that June.


University College Cork, Cork Film Festival


Cork Film Festival Collection


University College Cork


This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Please credit the Cork International Film Festival Archive and provide a link back to the site.




English, eng


Cork, Ireland

Still Image Item Type Metadata

Original Format


Physical Dimensions

216 x 165mm



University College Cork, Cork Film Festival, “Original Tóstal Council,” Cork International Film Festival Archive, accessed January 27, 2022, https://corkfilmfest.ucc.ie/items/show/440.