Remembrance Sunday: Services held across Northern Ireland

Services have been held across Northern Ireland to mark Remembrance Sunday.

Northern Ireland Secretary Chris-Heaton Harris and the Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) Leo Varadkar attended the commemoration in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh.

They were joined by victims and relatives of the 1987 IRA bomb attack at the town's war memorial which killed 12 people.

The taoiseach also attended a cross-community church service.

In Belfast, wreaths were laid at the cenotaph at City Hall, while other cities and towns held ceremonies following a silence observed at 11:00 GMT.

The events commemorate servicemen and women who died during both world wars and in later conflicts.

The head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service, Jayne Brady, was among the guests at the Enniskillen commemoration.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) Chief Constable Jon Boutcher also laid a wreath.

The ecumenical service in Saint Macartin's Cathedral was attended by senior clergy from the four main churches in Northern Ireland.

The town's war memorial is the site of what became known as the Poppy Day bomb.

Jeffrey Donaldson
DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson took part in the commemoration in London

The IRA explosion took place on 8 November 1987, when a crowd had gathered for that year's ceremony.

Eleven people were killed and a 12th victim, Ronnie Hill, slipped into a coma two days after he was injured by the blast and died 13 years later.

A visit to Enniskillen on Remembrance Sunday has become a regular fixture in the diary of Irish leaders in recent years.

The tradition began in 2012, when the then-taoiseach, Enda Kenny, became the first Irish prime minister to attend the event during the year that the town marked the 25th anniversary of the bomb.

Mr Varadkar followed in his predecessors' footsteps by laying a green laurel wreath at the town's war memorial on behalf of the Irish government.

Mr Heaton-Harris said the Irish government's presence at the event was "really important".

"People like to see the British government and the Irish government work together, remember together and that can only be good for our mutual futures," he told BBC News NI.

Elsewhere, Democratic Unionist Party leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson attended the national commemoration in London, while Ulster Unionist Party leader Doug Beattie was at the service in Portadown.

Kevin Sharkey reporting from Belfast City Hall

A service has been held at Belfast City Hall to mark Remembrance Sunday.

The deputy lord mayor, Cllr Áine Groogan of the Green Party, laid a wreath at the cenotaph in the Garden of Remembrance on behalf of the citizens of Belfast.

Speaking after the event, Cllr Groogan said it was "true honour and a privilege" to represent the city at the event.

"Now more than ever, we really need to remember the horror of war, remember those who have lost their lives in conflicts, and work extra hard towards peace," she added.

Other wreathes were also placed at the cenotaph during the service.

Among the attendees were Northern Ireland Office Minister Steve Baker and Irish Sport Minister Thomas Byrne.

On the stroke of 11 o'clock the crowd of several hundred people fell silent to remember those who have died in wars around the world.

In Ballynahinch, County Down, a parade and service took place at town's new war memorial on Sunday afternoon.

Event organiser Margaret Armstrong said the names of 49 local men who served in both world wars have been added to the memorial in recent years.

Margaret Armstrong
Margaret Armstrong says names of 44 World War One veterans and five World War Two veterans have been added to the Ballynahinch war memorial in recent years

A total of 168 names are now inscribed on the monument - 144 of those being men who served during World War One, 24 in World War Two.

"I think it was difficult for the people at the time of the first memorial that research wasn't just as easy," she told BBC News NI.

"But by the time the second memorial was going up a lot more research had been done, so we put on two additional plaques to the new memorial."

Weekend of remembrance

Armistice Day commemorations also took place in towns and cities across Northern Ireland on Saturday.

Belfast's Lord Mayor Ryan Murphy, of Sinn Féin, took part in the remembrance ceremony at the Cenotaph in the grounds of the city hall on Saturday morning.

He said his participation was a "genuine attempt at reaching out the hand of friendship to all of those people who think Armistice Day is a significant event".

In Carrickfergus, County Antrim, a 97-year-old D-Day veteran was among those who attended the town's Armistice Day ceremony on Saturday.

George Horner
World War Two soldier George Horner was in his late teens when he landed on Sword Beach, Normandy, on D-Day

Former Royal Ulster Rifles soldier George Horner said it was "very, very important" to pay tribute to his fallen comrades.

"It's a day of remembrance. You remember all your friends - departed friends, the ones you lost," he said.

On Friday, crowds gathered at The Fountain in Londonderry to remember local people killed during World War One.

Primary school pupils and members of the community collaborated with the Building Cultural Networks project to create 100 white crosses with poppies.