The death has been announced of best selling author, journalist and broadcaster Deirdre Purcell. She was 77 and lived in Mornington.

Early in her career, Deirdre Purcell was an actress at the Abbey Theatre, featuring in a number of productions, and later worked as an award winning print journalist and as a broadcaster with RTÉ.

She wrote for newspapers including the Sunday Tribunewhere she won a journalist of the year award in 1986, and was the first female anchor of the Nine O’Clock news on RTÉ Television.

Purcell also wrote many critically and commercially acclaimed novels including Falling for a Dancer, which was adapted for television in 1998, as well as A Place of Stones, That Childhood Country, Grace In Winter and Days We Remember.

She also published a number of non fiction works, including The Time of My Life with Gay Byrne.