Robin Mercer BEM is pictured with Lord Lieutenant Dame Fionnuala Jay-O'Boyle DBE, at a ceremony in Hillsborough Castle, where he was presented with the British Empire Medal. He is joined by his wife Edith, son Alan and his wife Ciara.

Robin Mercer BEM has received his British Empire Medal from Lord Lieutenant Dame Fionnuala Jay-O’Boyle DBE, at a ceremony in Hillsborough Castle.

Speaking about the occasion, Robin said: “It was an immensely special day to receive my British Empire Medal in such a beautiful venue. Even the weather was kind to us and we got to enjoy the Hillsborough Castle gardens!

“The ceremony was very well organised and everyone made me feel so special.

“I was proud to receive my honour with so many people from all over Northern Ireland who received well deserved awards including those from the medical profession and those recognised for their charity work.

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“It was lovely to see everyone turned out in their best attire and after the official ceremony, we were treated to tea and coffee while a harpist entertained us, before having official photos taken as a magnificent memento of the day.

“Now that I have received the medal it makes the honour so real following on from the surprise of receiving the letter I received late last year advising me of the award.

“I was grateful to have my wife Edith, son Alan and his wife Ciara with me to witness the presentation of my BEM and we ended the day celebrating with afternoon tea at the Grand Central where we had a beautiful view of Belfast to admire thanks to the weather!

“I am now looking forward to further celebrations with my wife at a garden party in Buckingham Palace next month.”

Robin Mercer BEM is managing director of the fourth generation garden lifestyle business Hillmount which has garden centres in Ards, Bangor, Belfast and Cheshire.

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