In June, three Fermanagh residents were awarded honours in The Queen’s Birthday Honours. In the most high-profile nod for the county, and for Northern Ireland, former First Minister and former Fermanagh South Tyrone MLA Arlene Foster was made a dame, with the title of Dames Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE).

Dame Arlene was the first female to be elected as Northern Ireland First Minister, and the first female leader of the Democratic Unionist Party. She received her DBE for her Political and Public Service, and the Royalist told this newspaper that receiving her damehood during the Platinum Jubilee was very special to her.

Fermanagh businessman Jimmy Byrne (85) passed away peacefully, at his home, ‘Byeways’ on Friday, June 3.

His family led tributes to the loving father and grandfather and the “lasting legacy” of his love he has left behind.

A family spokesperson said: “Dad’s outstanding achievement, his pride and passion was his family. His love, generosity, patience, and kindness has left a lasting legacy that his family will remember for generations to come.”

The owners of Charlie's Bar Gerry and Teresa Burns marked 40 years of ownership of Charlie’s Bar, Enniskillen in June of this year. Originally named The White Star Bar, Gerry purchased the bar in May 1982 from his father the eponymous Charlie and named it after him under Gerry’s ownership. The bar has been in the Burns family for 78 years. The landmark pub has seen some change over the years remarked the pair but has played host to many memories for both the Burns family and their punters alike.

With thanks to the enthusiasm and passion of volunteers from many community organisations, churches, schools and youth organisations, County Fermanagh, the most westerly point of the UK to celebrate Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee, had the honour of hosting the largest community led celebration outside London.

The four days of celebrations began on Thursday, June 2, as Gary Wilson, The Guild of Mace-Bearers, read the Proclamation of The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Beacon Lighting Ceremony on the steps of Enniskillen Courthouse.

In mid-June, Michelle (Shelley) Cowan who was for 12 years of her life bed-bound and tube fed, before spending 10 years in a wheelchair walked into the spotlight across the Ardhowen Theatre stage as she took a starring role in a local production. Shelley was diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) while still at school and the determined young woman spoke of her progress and journey from being seriously ill at 15 years of age to starring in a musical alongside her friends at Fermanagh BrightStarz.

Later in June, Enniskillen scooped the ‘Ireland’s Best Kept Large Town’ and the ‘Best Overall’ awards at the all-island Ireland’s Best Kept Towns Awards. The prestigious wins also marked the Fermanagh town as the first town in Ireland to win the ‘Best Kept Large Town’ award twice since the competition was launched in 1995.

At the end of June, it was announced that Celine McCartan, a director of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council would leave her post to take on the role of principal and chief executive of South West College.