10 October – Your smile, your lips, your eyes, your face

We all like trailblazers. But what about those who were – maybe – one year too late to be one? Their achievement shouldn’t be overlooked, even though many are likely to.

Our friends in Ireland first exercised their Eurovision vocal chords in 1965. But one year later, when we were in Luxembourg, RTÉ sent today’s birthday boy Richard ‘Dickie’ Rock. No laughing at the back there. His was a nicely typical ballad of the time, and of Ireland’s general sound for many years. It eventually bore fruit on many occasions. Anyway, Dickie scored Ireland’s second ever maximum and was their best finish for [what’s] another year. As it happened, there was only ever going to be one winner in 1966, but Dickie was darn close to runner-up.

Dickie is 86 today.

Happy birthday, Dickie!