Rathcoole pays tribute to HRH Queen Elizabeth

Tributes were paid to Queen Elizabeth II during a service of thanksgiving in Rathcoole on the evening of the late monarch’s funeral.

The event, organised by members of RATH Community Group, brought local residents and organisations together to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth II on Monday.

Community groups joined together with school children and members of the Boys’ Brigade for the event at a recently commissioned mural to mark the Queen’s platinum jubilee in the Clonmore Green area of the estate.

Rosemary Bell-McCracken welcomed those in attendance to the memorial service before th eMayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Alderman Stephen Ross, led tributes to Queen Elizabeth II.

Residents gathered in the Clonmore Green area to pay their respects.

Ald Ross said: “In June of this year we all joined in celebration of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s platinum jubilee. Little did we know that only a few short months later we would all be watching her funeral on television.

“The pomp and splendour since the news of her passing we have all witnessed, truly makes us proud to be British. Queen Elizabeth was a queen for us all. She served us in this borough, in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England, her United Kingdom, which since the news of her passing has been united in grief.

“She devoted her life to all the people of the UK and indeed the Commonwealth. We say simply, thank you Ma’am, and thank God for a life and a reign long lived. God save the King.”

Pastor George McKim conducted a religious service before members of community bodies, religious groups and flute bands laid wreaths at the foot of the mural. Colin Williams read a poem in tribute to Her Majesty.

Members of 16th Newtownabbey Boys' Brigade.

Pastor McKim gave some closing remarks before the last post was played. A minute’s silence was observed before the National Anthem brought the event to a conclusion.

Following the event, a spokesperson for RATH said on Facebook: “A huge thank you to the many people in attendance this evening at our service of thanksgiving to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

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“Her life was 96 years. Her reign, 70 years and 214 days. We as a community, must work together to leave a healthy substantial and prosperous future for all the future generations within Rathcoole and further afield.”

Rosemary Bell-McCracken welcomed those in attendance to the memorial service.