Tributes paid to former primary school principal and politician

Former Lisburn City Councillor William Ward.
Former Lisburn City Councillor William Ward.

Tributes have been paid to former Dromara Primary School principal William Ward, who passed away peacefully on November 27 at the age of 86.

Mr Ward, formerly of Dromore and later Killeaton Crescent in Derriaghy, was principal of Dromara Primary from 1957 until 1970. He later served as a Lisburn City Councillor, from 2001 - 2011.

William Ward and his wife Ruth pictured in front of a wartime Dakota at Belfast for the final flight in 2008. Picture courtesy of John Kelly

William Ward and his wife Ruth pictured in front of a wartime Dakota at Belfast for the final flight in 2008. Picture courtesy of John Kelly

The UUP representative, a former elder of First Dromore Presbyterian Church, was elected to serve the Downshire DEA in 2001 and was re-elected in 2005. He decided not to stand in the 2011 local government election.

Paying tribute to his former party colleague, Alderman Jim Dillon said: “He was a very highly thought of member of the council and the Ulster Unionist Party.”

Former UUP Councillor Ivan Davis, who knew Mr Ward for many years, commented: “William was always a good attender. He was a very conscientious man who had a great interest in education. I am very sorry to hear of his passing.”

Lagan Valley MLA Trevor Lunn, who served on the council at the same time as Mr Ward, described him as “a hard-working and tenacious councillor”, while the current Mayor of Lisburn and Castlereagh, Cllr Tim Morrow, said he was “a hard-working and committed elected member who was widely respected by his peers.”

Current Lisburn and Castlereagh UUP deputy group leader, Cllr Alexander Redpath, added: “On behalf of the Ulster Unionist group on Lisburn & Castlereagh Council I would like to extend my deepest sympathies to the family of former Cllr William Ward. Cllr Ward served the Downshire district for over 10 years and had a reputation as a tireless worker for his constituents.”

Mr Ward, who was married to his wife Ruth for almost 60 years until she sadly passed away earlier this year, was laid to rest at First Dromore Presbyterian Church graveyard.

A family notice said he will be greatly missed by his seven children - Randall, Elwin, Dalreen, Gerwyn, Wynonah, Roswyn and Roselle, 20 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.