Lisburn Council establishes working group for Royal Hillsborough celebrations

Discussions are underway about holding a celebration to mark Hillsborough’s new royal status.

Friday, 11th June 2021, 9:42 pm
Updated Friday, 11th June 2021, 9:44 pm
Pictured at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens following the announcement by The Rt Hon Brandon Lewis MP, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland that Hillsborough has received Royal Status are: (front l-r) David Burns, Chief Executive, Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council; the Mayor, Councillor Hon Nicholas Trimble; The Rt Hon Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP; Laura McCorry, Head of Hillsborough Castle and Gardens. (back l-r) Alderman Paul Porter, Alderman Owen Gawith; Councillor Scott Carson; Alderman James Tinsley and Dr Ciaran Toal, Research Officer, Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum

Councillors ratified a decision to establish a working group at a meeting of the Corporate Services committee on June 9.

Hillsborough, home to the Queen’s official residence in Northern Ireland, will become the first town or village in the region to be given a Royal prefix.

The Government said the Co Down village will become Royal Hillsborough later this year.

However, chief executive of Lisburn Castlereagh City Council, David Burns said that it was unknown when the Letters Patent will be granted but it could come as soon as the Autumn.

In a report issued to members on Tuesday, it said that there should be “significant focus and planning over the summer months.”

The council said that the costs of the celebration is currently unknown at this stage.

The Northern Ireland Office, Hillsborough Castle and Gardens and members of the community are all also expected to be involved in planning the event.

Mr Burns said that a working group was needed to ensure progress of the celebratory plans over the summer months in absence of normal council committees.

He added: “I think this is a really exciting period for the council and it’s going to be an exciting period.

“Weekly meetings will likely be required throughout the summer to allow us to get on the front foot with this.”

The committee agreed that the following elected representatives be on the working group: Mayor Alderman Stephen Martin (Alliance), Councillor John Laverty (DUP), Alderman Michael Henderson (UUP), Councillor Owen Gawith (Alliance), Alderman James Tinsley (DUP), Councillor Scott Carson (DUP).