After receiving a high standard of applications from all over the county, Screen Wexford is pleased to announce that the Peggy Walsh Award for Female Camera Talent 2022 goes to Therese Dalton. 

Having originally studied broadcast journalism in Dublin, Therese Dalton pursued a career in the film and television industry in San Francisco and lectured at the city’s Academy of Art. Returning to Ireland, she worked as an editor for RTE and the BBC and subsequently as a camera operator. 

Therese Dalton & Ann Larkin

Back in her native New Ross, Therese continues to freelance and to run filmmaking workshops for young people and as coordinator for the County Wexford Youth Film Project. On learning of her win, she  spoke of being “honoured to receive the award” and how she was “mesmerised by the magical quality of Peggy Walsh’s Super 8 film footage from the 1960s.” 

Peggy Walsh, to whom the award is dedicated, was an amateur filmmaker born in Wexford a hundred years ago. She enriched the county by leaving behind  an extraordinary film archive that documents local life – most famously the visit of President John F. Kennedy in 1963.  Award winner, Therese Dalton went on to say how as a cinematographer shooting with digital video cameras for the past twenty years, she never felt the modern format matched the “luminous ethereal quality of Super 8 film.”

Screen Wexford, the local film initiative spearheaded by Wexford County Council, decided to support women filmmakers from the locale by awarding this new bursary – and, by naming it in honour of Peggy Walsh, to draw attention to the Wexford woman’s extraordinary talent and legacy.

Applications for the award were judged by Wexford native Jessica Drum – Chief Executive of the Screen Guilds of Ireland – and Film Director Diramuid Goggins, who both remarked on the challenge of making the selection due to the quality of the submissions. John Leahy, manager of the Irish Society of Cinematographers and 24-4 Drama will support Therese through the provision of equipment and has also linked her up with new mentor – John Conroy, AFC, ISC. Therese will also receive 1 year’s subscription to Women in Film & Television Ireland who promote greater representation of women on screen and behind the camera.

Therese Dalton with John Conroy and crew
Therese Dalton with John Conroy and crew

Linda Curtin, Wexford’s outgoing Film & TV Coordinator for Screen Wexford, points out parallels between the work of Therese Dalton and Peggy Walsh in terms of aesthetic and outlook. “Like Peggy, Therese is a true artist with a fascination for people and place.”

Peggy Walsh’s daughter, Ann Larkin, said “The Walsh family extend our sincere best wishes to Therese Dalton for winning the award. With a little inspiration from Peggy and a mountain of professional support, the opportunities are endless. The financial award is brilliant but the mentoring is priceless. Every frame captured is a memory made!”

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