Legacy Transcends City Politics 2009: Politician Loyalist

Legacy transcends city politics

He was a politician from loyalist area of Belfast, but David Ervine’s legacy has transcended the sectarian politics of his home city.
The leader of the Progressive Unionist Party died in 2007 following a heart attack aged 53. It was an abrupt end to his journey from being a UVF bomber to brokering the loyalist paramilitary ceasefire of 1994. After he died a foundation bearing his name was established, which supports education and peace-building initiatives. In his home area of east Belfast, Bridge Community Association’s Education by Choice project has received funding to increase educational achievement and aspirations. The flagship initiative received £29,000 for equipment and a programme tutor, to help residents across his former constituency, an area he remained passionate about until his death. Joe Conere has been the principal of the project for the last four years. Initially based on the Ravenhill Road helping Protestant children it has now opened a site in the Catholic Short Strand, thanks to funding from the initiative.

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