Preparations are already underway to mark the anniversary of the 400th anniversary of the death of Hugh O’Neill, Third Baron of Dungannon, second Earl of Tyrone and the last of the great Ulster Chieftain’s to be inaugurated at Tullaghoge Fort on the outskirts of Cookstown.
Both Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council and Cookstown District Council have been working in conjunction with The Ancient Clan O’Neill of Tyrone to raise awareness of the quadricentennial of the passing of one of the most revered and distinguished leaders of their time.
Both Councils recently hosted a special event at Tullaghoge Fort and an information evening at Ranfurly House to launch awareness of the significance of the anniversary and joined the Ancient Clan O’Neill in encouraging a worldwide return of the clans in August 2016 to participate in a series of commemorative events.
Speaking at the event Mayor of Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council, Cllr Roger Burton said: “It is good to welcome so many visitors to the Hill of The O’Neill and Ranfurly House Arts & Visitor Centre and to welcome our colleagues from Cookstown and Tullaghoge.
“Preparations are underway for this major event when potentially many visitors will come to this region creating a welcome economic boost whilst also celebrating the rich built and diverse cultural heritage that both Councils have worked so diligently to showcase.”
Vice-Chair of Cookstown District Council, Cllr Cáthal Mallaghan said, “Both Council’s recognise the significance of the O’Neill dynasty and we acknowledge the historical contribution of the most celebrated and most respected of the great Gaelic Chieftain’s, Hugh O’Neill. 2016 will provide a unique opportunity for everyone throughout this region and indeed further afield to play their part and to get involved in the events proposed. The project has been appropriately branded The Clans are Coming and we should all get ready to welcome significant numbers of visitors to this region in August 2016.”
The 2016 commemorative event is an initiative being spearheaded by the Ancient Clan O’Neill of Tyrone. Chief Guardian, Mr Daniel O’Neill said, “This is a great time for the clan O’Neill, with the opening of the Hill of O’Neill in Dungannon, the ancestral stronghold of our clan and the current development proposed for Tullaghoge Fort, where for centuries many of our Gaelic leaders were inaugurated. 2016 is a unique opportunity to welcome Celts from all over the world to this region and to participate in a series of commemorative events to mark the 400th anniversary of the passing of Hugh “The Great” O’Neill.
For further details about the Ancient Clan O’Neill and how to get involved in the 2016 events, please visit www.oneillsofulster.com