Charlie Poots, a long-serving DUP member and father of Northern Ireland’s Minister of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, passed away yesterday morning (April 23rd).
The 90-year-old was a founding member of the DUP and former Deputy Mayor of Lisburn.
Poots first stood for election as a Protestant Unionist in 1969, before serving in both the Northern Ireland Assembly from 1973-74 and the Constitutional Convention from 1975-76.
He spent 24 years as a councillor in Lisburn before stepping down from elected politics in 1997. He was made a Freeman of the City of Lisburn in 2009.
The family tradition of politics now lives on in both his son, Edwin, and his grandson, Caleb McCready, who was elected as DUP Councillor in the Downshire area of Lisburn last year.
DUP leader, Arlene Foster, paid tribute to Poots, saying: “My heartfelt sympathies are with my friend and executive colleague Edwin and the wider Poots family at this most difficult of times.”
“Having been involved in the caring form Charlie over the recent years I know how difficult it was not to be close to him as he approached the end of his life.”
“The current circumstances make it difficult for us all to express our thoughts directly with those who have lost someone. However, I hope they can take some comfort from the very many people who will have been impacted by Charlie’s life and work and who will feel his loss,” she concluded.