Lagan Valley MP Sir Jeffrey Donaldson was in Buckingham Palace recently for his Investiture following the award of a Knighthood by Her Majesty the Queen in her 90th Birthday Honours List.
The Investiture was carried out by Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and took place on 11 November which is Armistice Day.
Others present at the Investiture included the former Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne who became a Companion of Honour and Penelope Wilton who plays Mrs Crawley in Downton Abbey and who became a Dame.
“It was a wonderful occasion for my family and I to attend the investiture at Buckingham Palace, especially on Armistice Day when we remember those who laid down their lives for our freedom,” said Sir Jeffrey. “ To have the ceremony carried out by Prince William was very poignant for me as I first met him on the Falkland Islands when he was a serving pilot and I was visiting with the Defence Select Committee.
“I had a very warm conversation with the Prince when he presented me with my honour and he spoke fondly of his visits to Northern Ireland and the many times that he has stayed in Hillsborough Castle.
“There were a number of other people from Northern Ireland also presented with their honours on the same day and it was fantastic to meet so many recipients from all over the United Kingdom at the investiture.
“It was a great privilege for me to be part of this and to share the occasion with my wife Eleanor and family who have supported me so much throughout my political career.
“As I received this Knighthood, I was also conscious of following in the footsteps of my much more illustrious predecessors Sir Richard Wallace and Sir James Molyneaux, both of whom served our local community with great distinction.
“I want to thank my constituency staff for their hard work and dedication and above all to thank my constituents, many of whom have sent messages of congratulations following the announcement of my honour.
“I made clear then and I repeat now that I dedicate this Knighthood to the people of Lagan Valley who have supported me so faithfully over many years. Together we have achieved so much and still there is much to do.
“I will continue to serve as local MP and do my best to help create a better future for all who live in this beautiful constituency.”