QUB colleagues post a tribute to Lord Trimble on the conference room door

A tribute to Lord Trimble has been posted on the door of a lecture hall at Queen’s University Belfast, where he was an honorary and graduate professor.

Former colleagues at the university where the former law student was a part of university life have expressed their sadness over the death of the Nobel laureate.

Lord Paul Bew, Emeritus Professor of Irish History at QUB, hailed him as a “giant of Irish and international politics”.

The former adviser to Lord Trimble during his tenure as head of the UUP and colleague during his time working at Queen’s has recalled his legal prowess.

“Lord Trimble was a giant of Irish and international politics. But he was also a Queen’s University man,” he said.

“Proud of his undergraduate studies and his later role on the academic staff, the sharp legal mind he developed at university was key to his intellectual self-confidence and was at the heart of his assured management. of the negotiation of the Good Friday Agreement.”

A statement posted on the university’s website recalls how the former law student (1964-1968) was awarded the McKane Medal for Jurisprudence and graduated with first class honors, LLB.

He joined the faculty as a lecturer after graduating from law school in 1969 and became assistant dean of the law school (1973), lecturer (1977) and finally head of the commercial law department and real estate (1981 to 1989).

Lord Trimble was elected MP for Upper Bann five years after leaving university in 1990.

He then led the party in peace talks chaired by Senator George Mitchell and became co-architect of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, “which he has always said was the most significant achievement of his life,” the statement read.

“Following the agreement, he was elected Prime Minister in July 1998,” he continued.

“His major role in the peace process in Northern Ireland was recognized when he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, together with John Hume, leader of the Social Democratic and Labor Party, in 1998.

“The following year, he was decorated with the Legion of Honor by the French government.

“He received an honorary doctorate from Queen’s in 1999, along with then Deputy Prime Minister Seamus Mallon. In 2006 he was appointed to the House of Lords as Baron Trimble of Lisnagarvey in County Antrim.

“Lord Trimble’s association with Queen’s University continued throughout his life. In 2018, he took part in the events marking the 20th anniversary of the Belfast/Good Friday deal, organized by Queen’s, and was made an honorary professor of the university in April 2022.

A portrait of Lord Trimble by renowned local artist Colin Davidson was unveiled last month after being commissioned by the university.

“The portrait will hang in the Great Hall at Queen’s,” the statement read.

“The University is alsoheld the annual Lord Trimble Lecture with the Queen’s Emeritus Professor of Irish History, Lord Paul Bew, who gave the inaugural presentation.

Professor Ian Greer, President and Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s, paid a personal tribute to Lord Trimble.

“I first met Lord Trimble at the Belfast/Good Friday 20th Anniversary events hosted by Queen’s in 2018 and have had the privilege of getting to know David and Lady Daphne well over the past year. “, did he declare.

“David kindly agreed to accept an appointment as Honorary Professor in April and we were delighted when he also agreed to allow us to commission a portrait of him to hang permanently in the Great Hall.

“David Trimble has had an incredible impact with a substantial contribution as an international statesman and champion of peace.”

Professor Greer said everyone at Queen’s was “very proud” to celebrate Lord Trimble as a distinguished member of the University community.

“The university’s annual Lord David Trimble Lecture will ensure that his contribution to Queen’s and to local, national and international politics will never be forgotten,” he added.

“His strong legacy is the peace our students enjoy today, many of whom were born after the signing of the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement.

“He will be greatly missed. I would like to offer my sincere condolences to David’s family circle, especially his wife Daphne and their children Victoria, Sarah, Nicholas and Richard.

Angela C. Hale