Christmas cards, featuring designs by local children from a number of special schools, have been sent out by the Mayor, Councillor Andrew Gowan. The Mayor had asked local special school pupils to design his Christmas Card for 2023, showcasing their talents to the people of Lisburn and Castlereagh. 

The designs were created during a series of children’s workshops to produce the Council’s official Christmas card, with one winner chosen from each school. The workshops were led by professional artist, Grainne Kielty, the artist-in-residence at local charity, Arts Care.  

The winners included Ethan from Brookfield Special School, Moira who created ‘Reindeer’; Lucy from Torbank Special School, Dundonald with her design called ‘Puddings’; Cody, from Longstone Special School, Lisburn and ‘Baubles’; Sammie-Lynn from Parkview Special School, Lisburn who drew ‘Hats’; and Kodie, from Beechlawn Special School, Hillsborough whose painting was called ‘Star’.   

Mayor Gowan said: “Well done to all the children who got involved in my Mayor’s Christmas card competition and congratulations to the five worthy winners. I was totally overwhelmed by the amazing artistic ability on show. What a fantastic Christmas present to know that your artwork will be spreading Christmas cheer and festive good wishes.”  

As part of the competition, each school received a book voucher. The winning cards will be framed and presented to the schools by the Mayor. An exhibition of all the cards designed by the children is on display at the Island Arts Centre until 22 December 2023.