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Tree Planting Ceremony held at Parliament Buildings to mark Queen’s Platinum Jubilee

Session: Session currently unavailable

Date: 15 March 2022

Reference: SO 06/21/22

A tree planting ceremony was held in the grounds of Parliament Buildings to mark Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Today’s ceremony was a key part of a wider event to celebrate Commonwealth Day 2022.

The Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Alex Maskey MLA, was unable to preside over the event in person as planned after testing positive for COVID-19.  In the absence of the Speaker, the Chairman of the Northern Ireland Assembly Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Branch, William Humphrey MBE MLA, opened the event and Robbie Butler MLA spoke on behalf of the Assembly Commission.  They were joined by members of the CPA Branch Executive Committee and members of the Northern Ireland Assembly Commission to plant the tree.

The Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly said: “I regret that I was unable to lead this event in person but I am glad that today the Assembly had the opportunity to formally mark Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee.  It is extremely positive that the Assembly Branch of the CPA, the Assembly Commission and all parties have agreed to this initiative and I want to thank them all for their support. 

“I recognise that the planting of this tree is important to the unionist community.  For others it is also fitting for the Assembly to demonstrate its respect given the significant contribution the Queen has made to political progress here when so much has changed over the last seventy years in our community and the wider world.”

The Chairman of the Northern Ireland Assembly Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Branch, William Humphrey MBE MLA said: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Northern Ireland Assembly Commission for agreeing to our request to plant a tree in the grounds of Parliament Buildings to mark Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. My colleagues and I were delighted to take part in today’s ceremony, and to see our own tree planted as part of the ‘Queen’s Green Canopy’.

“Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II continues to be a cherished and inspirational figure across the Commonwealth. Today has been an important opportunity for us to reflect on and recognise her tireless service and dedication, as well as the significant contribution she has made towards building peace and reconciliation. I have no doubt that this birch tree will serve as a lasting and respectful tribute to Her Majesty, in this her Platinum Jubilee year.”

Today’s Commonwealth Day Reception also featured a blend of music and dance performances from Africa and Asia.

ENDS

Notes to Editor:

  • Further information about the Membership and work of the NI Assembly Commission can be found here.
  • The Silver Birch tree was planted at the east side of Parliament Buildings.
  • Further information about the Northern Ireland Assembly Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Branch can be found here.
  • Further information about the ‘Queen’s Green Canopy’ can be found here.

Media enquiries to:
Sinead Murphy
Deputy Communications Officer
Northern Ireland Assembly
Phone: 028 9052 5938       Mobile: 078 998 64368
Email: sinead.murphy@niassembly.gov.uk

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