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Dr Brendan Farrelly MVB, Dr Med Vet MRCVS, the first resident Director of the Irish Equine Centre passed away after a long illness on 11th January 2014. Brendan was a legend within the Irish and international horse industries. He received his veterinary qualification from Dublin during the war years and was a multiple award winning undergraduate. Horses rapidly became his primary focus and he was an important member of the staff of the then Equine Research Station, now known as the Animal Health Trust, in Newmarket. He gained specialist qualification through his Doctoral Thesis, written by him in Swiss German which was awarded by the University of Berne, Switzerland. He later joined the first multiple handed equine practice in Ireland, the Riversdale Clinic, along with his colleagues Maxie and Stan Cosgrove and the Collins brothers Sean and Ted.

Brendan returned to academic life and became a senior lecturer in equine pathology in the University College Dublin Veterinary Faculty, based at the Veterinary College in Ballsbridge. Brendan's skills were essential for the then rapidly evolving Irish bloodstock industry, in which newly emerging conditions such as herpes virus abortion and nervous form herpes virus infection could cause economic chaos in an industry that was rapidly progressing from post war austerity, into a major force within the Irish economy. He became synonymous with equine pathology, at home here in Ireland and throughout the world. He was an advisor to the ITBA, the Turf Club and an active member of the Science Committee of the Royal Dublin Society.

Brendan was quietly spoken and always ready to share his immense knowledge not only on pathology but on his enormous range of other interests, for example history, classical music, the Irish language / culture and fly fishing. He was encouraged to retire from the University, to become first Director in Residence of the Irish Equine Centre, by its founder the late Sean Collins. His first post mortem examinations were carried out at the Centre in April 1984 and he guaranteed the initial submissions and national and international reputation of the Centre, by the simple fact of his being there. He was much more than the Centre's first pathologist and was the quiet guiding hand that directed the Centre through its turbulent initial years. He left it with an immense legacy after his retirement in the mid 1990’s. He was predeceased by his wife Eileen. He is sadly missed by his son, daughter, 6 grandchildren and all of his colleagues and associates. May he rest in Peace.