Territorial Army to get Freedom of Ballymoney

ANOTHER big ‘Freedom of the Borough’ ceremony is set for Ballymoney - on Saturday September 1.

Fresh from the conferment of the Freedom of Ballymoney on the Royal Irish Regiment when thousands lined the streets on May 12 this year, the town is set is for another military occasion.

Ballymoney Borough Council previously agreed to grant ‘Freedom’ to the Territorial Army and now events have been arranged for the start of September.

Back in January last year, the DUP’s Alderman Cecil Cousley proposed, seconded by his party colleague, Councillor Evelyne Robinson, ‘That the Freedom of the Borough of Ballymoney be conferred on The 152 (Ulster) Transport Regiment of the Royal Logistics Core of the Territorial Army as acknowledgement and thanks to those who have served and continue to serve their country with great distinction at home and abroad.’

The title ‘Honorary Freeman’ is the highest award that a council can grant to an organisation or individual to record its appreciation of outstanding achievement.

Ballymoney Borough Council has conferred the title only eight times since 1973 which in itself demonstrates the importance of the title. The conferral ceremony is formal in nature to reflect the dignity of the title.

Previous Freedom ceremonies were held for: The Royal Ulster Constabulary and The Royal Ulster Constabulary Reserve; Mrs Mary J Holmes OBE JP; Mr Joey Dunlop OBE; The Royal British Legion Northern Ireland; Dr Ian R K Paisley MP MEP MLA; The Northern Ireland Fire Brigade; Dr Robert Dunlop; The Royal Irish Regiment.