In this Brexit world we live in today it is understanable that British citizens are interested in any possibility of becoming a citizen of another EU nation so as to retain their right to live and work through the remaining 27 member states of the EU. For people in the UK it is a distinct possibility that one would have the right to Irish citizenship, in fact there are approximately 6.7 million British citizens entitled to Irish citizenship (Source) which is impressive considering the population of Ireland itself is only 4.7 million.
There are a number of scenarios outlined below that would facilitate you becomming an Irish citizen, just pick the one that is right for you.
I was born, or one of my parents was born, on the island of Ireland
If one of your parents was born on the island of Ireland (i.e. the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland) or you yourself were born on the island of Ireland then good news, you're already Irish! You don't need to register your birth or anything, you can just apply for your passport right now.
Request your APS2 forms to apply for a passport from the Irish embassy in London at https://www.dfa.ie/irish-embassy/great-britain/contact-us/passport-queries/
It's important to note though that a passport isn't what makes you Irish, you already are and don't need a passport to be Irish. That said it's one of the few ways you can prove to other people you're Irish easily so not a bad idea. Plus Irish passports are cheaper than British ones!
One of my parents is an Irish citizen but was not born on the island of Ireland
If you were born abroad, and one of your parents was also born abroad but was an Irish citizen at the time of your birth through descent or foreign birth registration then you can become an Irish citizen by registering your foreign birth with your local embassy or consulate. This requires a vast collection of original certificates such as parents and grandparents birth certificates, marriage certificates, and death certificates so be prepared to gather a lot of paperwork.
Once your foreign birth registration is accepted you are officially an irish citizen from the date the application is accepted (not from your date of birth), you will receive a certificate in the post which you can then use to apply for an Irish passport (they even send you a form with your certificate).
Note - If the parent through whom you're claiming citizenship are themselves Irish by virtue of a foreign birth registration then you are only eligible if they were Irish before you were born. If they became Irish by foreign birth registration after you were born then you are not eligible, sorry.
One of my grandparents was born in Ireland
Like above, if one of your grandparents was born in Ireland then your parents are Irish as well so all you need to do is register your foreign birth.
I live in Ireland
If you are a UK, EU/EEA, or Swiss national and live in Ireland and have done for at least 5 of the last 9 years then you can apply for citizenship through naturalisation. To do this you need to prove you were resident in Ireland by providing three proofs of residency for each of the 5 years such as utility bills, bank statements etc.
I am married to an Irish citizen
The final route to become an Irish citizen is through marriage or civil partnership (One that is recognised by the Irish state) to an Irish citizen. To claim via this route you need to have been married to an Irish citizen for at least 3 years. You also need to have lived as a couple on the island of Ireland as a legal resident for at least 3 of the last 5 years with 1 year of continuous residence at the point of application.
I am not an immigration lawyer, I simply did a lot of research as part of my decision to become an Irish citizen so thought I'd condense into one place for anyone who stumbles upon my blog. You should consult an immigration expert if you're uncertain, visit https://www.dfa.ie, or call your local Irish embassy, conslute, or Irish centre.
Finally, if you decide to go ahead, good luck! Let me know if you were successful by Tweeting @kieranjones
This blog was correct at the time of writing in December 2017.
Feature image is courtesy of the Irish Post