Lisburn woman attends special Big Lunch with The King and Queen in honour of community work

Doreen Johnston from Lisburn joined a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh recently, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities.
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Doreen was invited in recognition of her efforts bringing people in Lisburn together with a Big Lunch, which started last year with the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Big Lunch and gave her and fellow volunteers the drive to host a Coronation Big Lunch this year.

As Duchess of Cornwall, Her Majesty was patron of The Big Lunch initiative since 2013, with the annual community celebration moving to May 6-8 this year in honour of the Coronation.

At the event, Doreen had the opportunity to join in with a very special Big Lunch, where Their Majesties spoke to community organisers from across Northern Ireland, found out more about the roles they play in their communities and thanked them for their support for the Coronation Big Lunch this year.

Doreen Johnston from Lisburn is pictured at a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities and celebrating the rich heritage of Fermanagh.Doreen Johnston from Lisburn is pictured at a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities and celebrating the rich heritage of Fermanagh.
Doreen Johnston from Lisburn is pictured at a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities and celebrating the rich heritage of Fermanagh.

Doreen also spent time connecting with other Big Lunch organisers from Northern Ireland, with the group discussing experiences, advice and highlights from their Big Lunches and volunteering activity over the years.

Reflecting on the event, Doreen said: “It started last year at the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Big Lunch event and that gave us the momentum to put on the Coronation Big Lunch.

"This was in St Columba’s Presbyterian Church in Lisburn. We had over 60 guests attend and we provided lunch for all guests and entertainment. The memories will live long with us. A big thank you to the Eden Project for all the support and resources and motivation to organise these events.”

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The King is pictured with Doreen Johnston from Lisburn at a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities and celebrating the rich heritage of Fermanagh.The King is pictured with Doreen Johnston from Lisburn at a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities and celebrating the rich heritage of Fermanagh.
The King is pictured with Doreen Johnston from Lisburn at a very special celebration at Enniskillen Castle in Fermanagh, which saw The King and Queen honour people volunteering in their communities and celebrating the rich heritage of Fermanagh.

Grainne McCloskey, Country Manager for Scotland and Northern Ireland at Eden Project Communities, which organises The Big Lunch, said: “The organisers invited today are a shining example of what can be achieved when we reach out to our neighbours, whether it’s a reduction in loneliness, valuable funds raised for good causes or people coming together to make improvements to where they live.

"Everyone was thrilled that The King and Queen were able to honour the time these organisers have donated to their communities, and hope it inspires more people in Northern Ireland to join in with The Big Lunch in future.”