Alliance pays tribute to Susan O’Brien

North Down Alliance representatives have paid tribute to longstanding Holywood Councillor, Susan O’Brien, who passed away at the weekend.

Alderman O’Brien served as Councillor for Holywood from 1981 to 2005, including serving as Deputy Mayor 1994/95 and as Mayor of North Down 1995/96. Her funeral took place today (Tuesday) at St Colmcille’s Church in Holywood.

Current Alliance Holywood Councillor Andrew Muir said Susan was well-respected in the local community.

“The people of Holywood, friends, family and the wider Alliance Party were deeply saddened to learn of the loss of Susan O’Brien MBE. She dedicated herself to serving local people for many decades, including her time as a Councillor from 1981 until 2005. Susan was recognised when awarded an MBE in 2006.

“Many people still talk about Susan’s work and the legacy left by her. While canvassing during the recent election, many people told me their memories of Susan’s stamina and commitment to Holywood.

“Susan’s passing is a great loss but will continue to act as an inspiration for me as I work to serve the people of Holywood, spurred on by her commitment to a new more inclusive future.”

North Down Alliance MLA Stephen Farry said Susan was “absolutely fearless” in standing up for what she believed was right.

“Susan was dogged in pursuit of good outcomes for all of the many people who contacted her,” he said.

“Everyone in Holywood seemed to know Susan and her door was always open for people to bring issues to her. She was the clearest demonstration of what a Councillor should be in the purest sense – absolutely focused on getting the best for her constituents. As a canvasser, she was determined to persuade people and would rarely take ‘no’ as an answer.

“Her election as Mayor of North Down was ground-breaking in terms of inclusion and she was extremely dedicated to her many and varied duties and engagements.

“While Susan may have been small in stature, she was a giant in her terms of her contribution to Holywood.”

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