The life of a long-time stalwart of an Royal Black Lodge at The Birches has been honoured by Craigavon Borough Council.
A Council Coat of Arms was presented to Olive Branch RBP No 393, in memory of The Late Wor Sir Knight David Matchett, who died earlier this year following a long and courageous battle with cancer.
The presentation made was on the Last Saturday by Craigavon Councillor Colin McCusker, who cites Mr Matchett as a key influence on his political career.
“David Matchett was a true friend and supporter of my late father Harold, in the 70’s and 80’s, and consequently had a huge influence on me and my career in politics,” he said.
“I have been walking with RBP 393 as a guest for a number of years now, and it was David who invited me to walk with his Preceptory.
“I will forever be indebted to David for all his support to me and my family and I wanted to remember him in a way that was fitting.
“David encouraged me to pursue a career in politics and had followed my progress with interest, and I am proud to have been able to present this Borough Coat of Arms to RBP 393 in his memory.”
Nigel Matchett, David’s son, said the family were deeply honoured.
“When Colin asked me and the family if he could make this presentation in memory of my dad, I was delighted.
“My father loved this Preceptory and Clantliew Orange Hall, he was a member for over 50 years, and had been delighted when Colin became a Craigavon Councillor.
“In 2015 the borough of Craigavon will cease to exist, and we are happy to have this small piece of history in our hall that perpetuates the memory of my dad.”
Worshipful Master Tom Hewitt said it was a fitting tribute to their long-time member, “As the Master of RBP 393 it is always a privilege to receive presentations.
“David was a stalwart of this Preceptory who worked quietly in the background on behalf of all the Sir Knights. It’s lovely to have his memory marked in this special way.”