Big thank you from

Oyster Festival helps keep Jill's memory alive


The Mayor of Lisburn William Leathern and the winner of the flowerbed competition Christopher O'Brien.

The Mayor of Lisburn William Leathern and the winner of the flowerbed competition Christopher O'Brien.

THE Hillsborough International Oyster Festival, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, has selected The Jill Todd Trust as its beneficiary for 2012.

The Festival takes place from September 6-9 and a percentage of funds accumulated from the four-day event will be donated to the local charity.

Jill Todd was a born and bred Hillsborough girl who attended Hillsborough Primary School and later Wallace High. Film and photography became her chosen career path leading to the study of those subjects at Edinburgh Napier University, where she graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in 2009.

A successful career in photography was cut short when Jill's life was taken by cancer in October 2010, aged just 23. In January 2011, Jill's family established The Jill Todd Trust, a charity to promote photography, the careers of young photographers and to raise funds for the care of those who suffer from and research into the quest to a cure for cancer.

The Hillsborough Flower Bed Competition in conjunction with the Jill Todd Trust and the Hillsborough International Oyster Festival was launched to primary school pupils in Downshire and Beechlawn schools.

The competition was to design a flowerbed for the Al Roundabout that marks the entrance to Hillsborough.

From over 80 entries Christopher O'Brien from Beechlawn was named winner by the judges with Naomi Davidson in 2nd place and Jack Mawhinney in 3rd place, both from Downshire. Harrison Hughes and Dylan Watson from Beechlawn and Megan Ingram from Downshire received commendations.

Jane Wheavil, art teacher and chair of judging panel, Jill's parent's Barrie and Trish Todd and Jill's friend and graphic designer Laura McAleer judged the competition.

Hillsborough International Oyster Festival 2012 Chairman Sean Hall said, The Festival committee is delighted to have appointed The Jill Todd Trust as charity for this year's Festival. The entries for the first year of the flower-bed competition have been impressive and we are thrilled to have the local school children involved".

Lisburn's newly appointed Mayor Alderman William Leathem was in attendance at the ceremony to present the winner with a cheque for £30 and to congratulate the runners up. LCC is once again proud to be sponsor of the Hillsborough Oyster Festival that attracts over 15,000 visitors to the Hillsborough Village each September and associated economic benefits.

For details on the Hillsborough International Oyster Festival 2012 log-on to

Ulster Star