Colum Eastwood beards holder William Crawley for Beard of Ireland 2017

In Uncategorized on March 16, 2017 by kmflett

Beard Liberation Front

Press release 16th March

Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266


The Beard Liberation Front, the informal network of beard wearers, has said that SDLP leader Colum Eastwood has bearded the 2016 winner, broadcaster William Crawley, to take the 2017 Beard of Ireland title. High profile Belfast Newsletter journalist Sam McBride was third.

There was a record on-line poll of just under 10,000 votes and while the lead changed hands several times, the SDLP leader, who has a distinctive two tone beard, was a clear winner as the poll closed.

Such was the interest on the final day that voting was extended from a midday to a 3pm close to allow all those who wanted to express a view on the Irish Beard of the Year to do so.

The campaigners say that after the snap Assembly election in the North there looks to have been a clear cross-over to the Beard of Ireland poll particularly in respect of the high turnout.

The BLF says that while traditionally a land of predominantly clean shaven cultures, Ireland has in recent times become something of a centre for stylish and trendy beards.

Contenders for the title in 2017 included actors, comedians, political activists, journalists and rugby players.

The campaigners say the poll was specifically about the impact the beard of an individual has made in Irish public life and no other factor.

BLF Organiser Keith Flett said, the very high turn-out underlines that beards are now very much a part of public life in Ireland. We congratulate Colum Eastwood on winning the Award and hope his beard has more success in terms of positive impact, than the other British politician to win a Beard Award in the last year- Jeremy Corbyn.

Beard of Ireland

Gerry Adams, politician

Steve Agnew, politician

Gerry Carroll, politician

William Crawley, broadcaster

Stuart Dallas, footballer

Colum Eastwood, politician

Richie Foran, footballer manager

David Ford, politician

Sam McBride, journalist

Damian Mackel, wrestler

David Norris, politician

Sean O’Brien, rugby player


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