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Brian (Bernard) Trainor, BA History, 1949 (died 22 August, 2018, aged 89)

Extract from obituary in the Irish News; a full version of the article is available here.

AN historian credited with helping generations of people explore their Irish roots has died aged 89.

Dr Brian Trainor was a former director of the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) and the Ulster Historical Foundation.

His determination to open up records to the general public endeared him to historians, genealogists and family archivists north and south.

Dr Trainor became director of the Public Record Office in 1971 and was later appointed chairman of the Irish Manuscript Commission by former taoiseach Dr Garret FitzGerald.

Born in 1929, he was the son of a station master on the Great Northern Railway.

He won a scholarship to St Columb’s College in Derry where he developed his love for history.

In 1949, he graduated from Queen's University, Belfast with a first class degree in the subject and after further studies in London, returned to lecture at Queen's.

Dr Trainor began his career as an archivist in the old Public Record Office in Belfast in the late 1950s.

Over the next 50 years, he travelled the length and breadth of Ireland and also made regular coast to coast tours of the US promoting Irish and local history.

He was honoured by the Ulster Historical Foundation for his tireless work at home and abroad which helped shed light on the family trees of countless people from all corners of the globe.

He is survived by his wife Pilar, son Pancho, daughters Rosanna and Katrina and five grandchildren.

 

 

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