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Frankie goes to Borris: how UK pop stars became tax exiles in Ireland — and stayed for the beer

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Damian Corless recalls his conversations with the newly minted millionaires of pop and rock from Def Leppard to Frankie Goes to Hollywood who made their home here in the 1980s

Frankie Goes to Hollywood during their time in 1986 at Borris House. Photo: Mike Prior/Getty Images

In the World Cup summer of 1986, a football match took place between Dermot Morgan’s Showbiz XI and a Rock Exiles selection drawn from Def Leppard, Spandau Ballet and Frankie Goes to Hollywood, three juggernauts of the Second British Music Invasion of America.

Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott told me: “If ourselves, Spandau and Frankie were living in London, we wouldn’t know each other, but here we’re all like foreigners abroad, so we’ve struck up good friendships.”

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