Queen Elizabeth II: Books of condolence to open in Newtownabbey

Following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II yesterday (Thursday), books of condolence are to open across Antrim and Newtownabbey today (September 9) for local residents to pay tribute.

Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Ald Stephen Ross signing the online book of condolence.
Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Ald Stephen Ross signing the online book of condolence.

Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Ald Stephen Ross, will open books of condolence at Antrim Castle Gardens- Large parterre, Ballyclare War Memorial Park and Mossley Mill Civic Square (beside Theatre at The Mill) at noon.

In addition, an online book of condolence has also been opened.

Leading the borough’s tributes to Queen Elizabeth II, Ald Ross said: “It is with deep sadness that I offer these words of condolence on the occasion of the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.

“History records her as our longest reigning Monarch, in June we celebrated her Platinum Jubilee marking 70 years on the throne. So it is difficult to express the scale of that contribution to our nation.

“In a world drifting towards war, she observed how her father’s steadfast resolve inspired a nation through blitz, battles and beach-landings to victory, and indeed she joined in that effort joining the Auxiliary Territorial Service.

“Newly married, and as a new mother, her own father’s unexpected ill-health and passing meant she ascended the throne long before she might have expected to, but she accepted this as her destiny.

“It was this constant recognition that service must come before self, that marked her unwavering dedication to duty.

“Reigning for 70 years, 15 Prime Ministers served at Her Majesty’s pleasure, the first of which was Sir Winston Churchill. No doubt his counsel was a great boon to her as a young woman setting out on her path as Sovereign.

“In the annals of history, the second great Elizabethan age will be recognised for the pace of change in technology. But amidst that change, Her Majesty’s influence was a constant.

“Dignified, diligent, bringing stability to the institution, and placing it on a firm footing for the future.

“Today we are in mourning, we have lost a great Queen. But her loss will be deeply felt by many on a personal level. She was a devoted wife, mother, grand-mother and great-grand-mother, and of course the nation mourned with her when she lost her beloved husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in April 2021.

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“I’m sure that many will bear her son His Majesty, The King in their thoughts as he ascends the throne.”