A unique feature of the Royal Black Institution’s programme of events to mark the centenary of Northern Ireland will be the unveiling of a bust of Sir Noman Stronge.
This has been a challenging assignment for a number of logistical reasons.
Nevertheless, the team behind the Sir Norman Stronge Memorial Project are confident they are on course to produce a fitting tribute to the former Sovereign Grand Master, who was brutally slain by republican terrorists over 40 years ago, aged 86.
The bust will show Sir Norman Stronge wearing his chain of office and will be carved from Shanxi Black Granite. It will measure just over two feet wide and around two-and-a-half feet high.
The bust will stand on a pedestal approximately six feet tall, upon which there will be a plaque made from brushed aluminium with a suitable inscription in black lettering.
The bust and pedestal will be placed in the courtyard at the Institution’s new headquarters, which are currently being developed in the village of Loughgall.
Together with a planned Book of Remembrance for all Sir Knights murdered by terrorists during the Troubles, it’s felt the bust of Sir Norman Stronge will bring an appropriate commemorative aspect to the Institution’s NI centenary programme.
In another exciting venture, the Loyal Order will also release a special Centennial Jewel later this year.
The high-quality item will come in an embossed presentation box, accompanied by a printed card explaining the significance of the jewel’s symbolism, which will incorporate Northern Ireland, the degrees of the Royal Black Institution, and Sir Norman Stronge.
The jewel will undoubtedly prove to be a much sought after collector’s item, as it’s the first piece of memorabilia to be produced by the Institution in 24 years.
The jewel will be priced at £20 and all proceeds will go towards the Sir Norman Stronge Memorial Project fund, which will re-invest all monies into marking this important year in a meaningful way.
Further details about the Sir Norman Stronge bust and the Centennial Jewel will be released at a later date.