Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor William McCaughey, has paid a special visit to Carniny Primary School, Ballymena to thank local pupils who took part in a special creative initiative to mark the Centenary of Northern Ireland.
As part of Council’s ‘Looking Back, to Look Forward: Mid and East Antrim 1921 – 2021’ project, 96 pupils from three primary schools across the Borough enjoyed a lively workshop with local writer and poet, Angeline King.
Angeline encouraged the pupils at Carniny Primary School, Moyle Primary School, Larne and St Nicholas’ Primary School, Carrickfergus, to think about what living in Northern Ireland, and particularly in Mid and East Antrim, meant to them. Enthused, the talented children wrote their own poems.
Inspired by the children’s work, a framed copy, written in calligraphy, of Angeline King’s poem ‘Home’ was presented by the Mayor to Carniny Primary School, along with certificates of appreciation for the children and copies of Council’s ‘Looking Back, to Look Forward: Mid and East Antrim 1921 – 2021’ NI Centenary book.
The Mayor said:
“Due to Covid-19 restrictions in the winter I had to delay my visit to personally thank the pupils of Carniny Primary School for their contribution to marking this significant milestone for Northern Ireland.
“I am delighted to have spent time with them, as they are the next generation to help make a great future for everyone to share.
“I also would like to note my thanks to the two other primary schools that participated and to Angeline King for her excellent work with the children.”
Angeline King’s poem has been inscribed onto three stone tablets, and are now on permanent display in the Borough’s three town halls as a legacy of marking the Centenary.
In addition, the poems written by the children at Carniny Primary School, along with additional branded items, have joined other mementos in a Ballymena time capsule to mark the Centenary of Northern Ireland. The time capsule was sealed by the Mayor during his visit to the primary school.
Two other time capsules have also been acquired – one each for Larne and Carrickfergus. The capsules will be kept in perpetuity in the three town museums.
Council’s ‘Looking Back, to Look Forward’ Project was supported by funding from the Northern Ireland Office’s Shared History Fund, distributed by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.