Armistice Day: SF deputy joins Belfast lord mayor at service

Up to 1,000 people attended the Armistice Day service at Belfast City Hall
Up to 1,000 people attended the Armistice Day service at Belfast City Hall

Up to 1,000 people have gathered at Belfast’s City Hall to remember the war dead on Armistice Day.

A lone bugler began and ended a two-minute silence during a short ceremony at the Garden of Remembrance.

Silence fell at 11:00 GMT to remember servicemen and women killed in battle. A service of rememberance was held at the cenotaph in the grounds of Belfast City Hall to remember those who died giving their lives for their country. Picture Mark Marlow/Pacemaker Press

Silence fell at 11:00 GMT to remember servicemen and women killed in battle. A service of rememberance was held at the cenotaph in the grounds of Belfast City Hall to remember those who died giving their lives for their country. Picture Mark Marlow/Pacemaker Press

DUP Lord Mayor Brian Kingston and his Sinn Fein deputy Mary Ellen Campbell were among those who took part in the event.

Mr Kingston described the turnout as impressive.

He said: “It just shows that people do have that appreciation and to show their recognition of all who served in two world wars and subsequent conflicts, and in particular those who made the ultimate sacrifice in upholding the freedom and democracies that we enjoy today.

“I was very impressed by the turnout that we had for the simple ceremony.”

Northern Ireland Office Minister Kris Hopkins and SDLP councillor Tim Attwood were also among the crowd, which included military veterans and their families.

“I thought it was a bit brief,” said Belfast man David Delaney, who had come from the Shankill to pay his respects.

“They could have done a bit more saying it was the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme. I suppose it will all be happening on Sunday,” he added.

His wife Mabel said: “It was a good turnout though I’d have liked to see a few more dignitaries there.”

Violet McCurdy from east Belfast said: “We come down every year. It’s always nice.

“It was lovely to see a really good turnout this year.”

Similar ceremonies were held across the Province, with First Minister Arlene Foster among those who paused to reflect at the war memorial in Enniskillen.

In 2013, Sinn Fein’s Mairtin O Muilleoir made history as the first republican lord mayor to participate in an Armistice Day event at the Belfast cenotaph.

Previously, November’s remembrance events in Northern Ireland were boycotted due to the association with the British military.