The Freedom of the City bestowed on three long serving politicians

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The Freedom of the City of Lisburn & Castlereagh has been bestowed on Alderman Jim Dillon MBE JP, Mrs Geraldine Rice MBE and Mr Tommy Jeffers.

This honour is in recognition of their contribution to public life within Lisburn Castlereagh and beyond for nearly a century collectively.

Mr Dillon was first elected in 1977 and both Mrs Geraldine Rice and Mr Tommy Jeffers were first elected in 1989.

All three have been honoured for their commitment to better the council area for its residents, helping to deliver new facilities and services and boost the local economy through construction, economic development and tourism.

The Mayor, Councillor Alan Givan, officiated at the ceremony, which was held in the Council Chamber and current Freemen, Lady Mary Peters CH DBE and Mrs Joan Christie CVO OBE attended the ceremony to see Mr Dillon, Mrs Rice. and Mr Jeffers become fellow freemen, Elected members, family and invited guests also attended the ceremony.

Speaking at the event the Mayor said: “Each of you has embraced your duties as elected representatives with dedication and impartiality, which is commendable.

“Integrity is the one word that connects our three new Freemen. Their passion, faith and commitment to serving our community has been unfailing for many years, and they truly are an inspiration to their peers.

“On behalf of the council I would like to thank them for the difference they have made to the community and delivering the best council services to those who voted them into office.”