‘Love Letter to Lurgan’ is opened at the town hall

Celebrating the 30th anniversary of Lurgan Town Hall and the launch of the 'Love Letter to Lurgan' Exhibition by Billy Hussey are Councillor Declan McAlinden, Vice-Chair of Leisure and Community Services Committee, Mark Patterson, Curator of the Exhibition and Ronnie Patterson, Chairperson of Lurgan Mechanics Institute.
Celebrating the 30th anniversary of Lurgan Town Hall and the launch of the 'Love Letter to Lurgan' Exhibition by Billy Hussey are Councillor Declan McAlinden, Vice-Chair of Leisure and Community Services Committee, Mark Patterson, Curator of the Exhibition and Ronnie Patterson, Chairperson of Lurgan Mechanics Institute.

Last Friday night saw the launch of Lurgan Town Hall’s 30th anniversary celebrations with the opening of the prestigious ‘Love Letter to Lurgan’ Exhibition.

This highly anticipated Exhibition by the late Billy Hussey – a Lurgan native – showcased both his love for the town and his passion for painting with around 70 people from near and far coming along to enjoy his remarkable talent.

Organised by BBC Radio Foyle presenter Mark Patterson, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and Lurgan Mechanics Institute, the Exhibition will run until Thursday, December 10, so make sure you take a trip to the town hall and don’t miss this wonderful display of local art.

The exhibition is the brainchild of BBC Radio Foyle star and former Lurgan man Mark Patterson.

It takes three strands with friezes much treasured by the town’s Mechanic’s Institute making one strand, his marvellous Ulster Coastal work another and his recreations of Georgian Belfast the third.

Many of his large friezes have to this day adorned the walls of the Institute, painted in his highly personalised and colourful style. This work is his civic testament and contains references to the style of Billy’s former teacher, the great John Luke.

Describing how the exhibition came to be Mark, a former Lurgan College pupil and now a fixture on the Londonderry/Derry airwaves, said: “I knew Billy personally and on the day we buried him I was moved to go to the Town Hall, I had always wanted to bring his work there.

“I met with manager Kate Freeburn who wanted to organise an event to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the refurbishment of the Town Hall.” It was very definitely a meeting of minds and the council then asked Mark to curate the exhibition and he’s been bowled over by the response to his plans.