MP attends Downing Street memorial

Jeffrey Donaldson MP
Jeffrey Donaldson MP

Lagan Valley MP Jeffrey Donaldson attended a special commemoration at Downing Street on Tuesday (July 1) to mark the start of the official World War One commemorations.

Following the service, Mr Donaldson presented the Prime Minister, David Cameron, with a poem written by the mother of a Lisburn solider who was killed during the Battle of the Somme.

“I was delighted to represent Northern Ireland at the event in Downing Street to mark the beginning of the centenary commemorations for World War One,” said Mr Donaldson.

“As Chairman of the Northern Ireland committee that is overseeing the commemorations here, I am very conscious of the enormity of that war and the impact it had across the community here.

“Indeed, the Prime Minister spoke of the valiant contribution that Ulster people make to the war effort and I was delighted to present him with a copy of a poem by a local woman, who’s son Ralph was killed at the Somme on July 1, 1916.

“He lived at Pipers Hill in the centre of Lisburn and the poem is particularly poignant because it speaks of the enormous pain that was felt by the families at home who lost loved ones during the war.

“It is these personal tragedies that I want to focus on, as well as the bigger commemorative events over the next four year period.

“When you look at the number of names of young men from Lisburn on the war memorial, it is evident this war had a huge impact on this local community and we want to explore that in more detail and remember the people who gave their lives for our freedom.”