NI centenary events funding secured by DUP councillor Billy Walker after councillors on NMD Council give full support.
Following a discussion at the Equality and Good Relations Reference Group at Newry Mourne and Down District Council at a meeting on 8th January, and further discussion on the Strategy Policy and Resources Committee on Thursday 14th January, it was agreed that funding be provided to mark the occasion on the anniversary in 2022 of the setting up of Northern Ireland. After discussion, the Councillors agreed to set up a Centenaries Funding Programme.
Cllr Billy Walker proposed read the motion: “Next year is the 100th anniversary of the creation of Northern Ireland. This holds great importance for many in our district Council area.
“This Council should recognise this, and in doing so provide financial support to mark this important Anniversary by establishing a Centenaries Funding Programme of £40,000 to be included in the financial call for 2021/2022.“
The DUP Councillor said: “We have asked Council to fund events and activities to celebrate the 100th centenary of Northern Ireland. This was presented to the Good Relations forum on Council Friday past and all members were in agreement that funding be made available by Council to support this historic point.
“We asked for £40,000 to be set aside so that people in our district can use it to support events whether they be talks, exhibitions, street parties, or other events that are appropriate. This motion was initially made at the full council meeting and went to the Good Relations group and then onto the Strategy Policy and Resources Committee so it has been well discussed and considered and now receives unanimous support.
“I would therefore like to thank everyone who contributed to this Council decision including the political parties in creating the opportunity for people across our district to celebrate the centenary event. The financial call should be made in February. “
Cllr Walker said that any interested parties should keep an eye eye the Council website and the local media for information about the available funding. Anyone with a relevant event can apply for centenary funding.
Addressing the Covid-19 issue, Cllr Walker said: “Hopefully with the vaccine and with constant vigilance and care, we can beat the virus and enjoy life once again in our communities.
“I expect it will be a month or two yet before we are through the worst of the pandemic, but we can plan and look forward to better times ahead later this year and into 2022, the centenary year.“
The motion was seconded by Cllr Glyn Hanna.