Agenda item


            Councillor P. Donnelly congratulated St. Matthews Men’s Soccer Team on achieving the Northern Amateur Football League (NAFL) Division 2A League Championships and wished them well in the upcoming League.  The Lord Mayor agreed to extend an invitation to the Team to attend a reception in the Lord Mayor’s Parlour.


            Councillor Long and several other Members expressed their concern regarding the recent attacks on Alliance members and also in regard to the homophobic and transphobic language being used across social media platforms and expressed solidarity with those targeted. 


            A number of Members stated that they were looking forward to the Belfast Pride Festival, which was scheduled to run from Friday, 21st to Sunday, 30th July, stating that they hoped this would offer a more positive view of Belfast and Northern Ireland.  Several of the Members stated that they looked forward to participating in the centrepiece Pride Parade on Saturday, 29th July and encouraged others to also join in.  


            Councillor Verner congratulated those who had received honours in the King’s Birthday Honours List 2023.  In particular, retired Director of Finance, Mr. R. Cregan, for services to Local Government, Reverend Tracey McRoberts, for her tireless work in the community and Ms. Agnes Close, a local businesswoman, who had dedicated her efforts campaigning for a Memorial Plot at Belfast City cemetery to remember more than 7000 babies buried there.  The Lord Mayor agreed to send letters of congratulations to the recipients. 


            Councillor D. Douglas extended congratulations to the East Belfast Community Development Agency (EBCDA) on reaching its 10th birthday, noting the work of Councillor S.  Douglas, Mr. M. Gibson and Mr. M. Briggs for their vision and drive in establishing the community hub.


            At the request of Councillor de Faoite, the Lord Mayor agreed to write to the Secretary of State seeking to set up a meeting with Party Group Leaders to discuss the continued cuts to services for children and young people across Northern Ireland. 


            Alderman Lawlor extended congratulations to the Glentoran 1923 Committee on reaching its centenary year.


            Councillor Maskey extended congratulations to the Lord Mayor on his forthcoming wedding.


            Councillor Long noted that July 1st was Happy Canada Day, and he took the opportunity to wish those Canadian citizens throughout the world a Happy Canada Day.


            Councillor S. Douglas and Alderman Rodgers congratulated the staff involved in the restoration and expansion of the Templemore Baths which had been repurposed into a visitor centre with modern leisure facilities.


            Councillor S. Douglas referred to the City Matters magazine and expressed gratitude to the staff for producing such an excellent publication. 


            It was noted that this was Ms. L. Caldwell’s, Director of External Affairs, Marketing and Communications, last meeting as she had resigned from the Council.  On behalf of the Council, the Lord Mayor thanked Lisa for her dedication and commitment to the Council and extended the Council’s best wishes to her going forward.  


            Councillor Maghie extended condolences to the family and friends of murder victim Chloe Mitchell and expressed concern at the high levels of violence against women in Northern Ireland and the need to ensure policy changes to try and end this violence.


            Councillor Murray congratulated the team of directors, volunteers and runners at Queen’s Parkrun who had recently won the Queen’s University Community Impact Sporting Award.