Ballymena’s Braid Centre was the venue for the inaugural agm of the Roger Casement Sinn Féin Republican Youth Cumann (North Antrim).
The event, which was attended by dozens of young people from Ballymena and the wider North Antrim area, was chaired by South Derry Sinn Fein Republican Youth Cumann member Christopher O’Neill and Magherafelt District Councillor Sean Bateson.
Causeway Coast and Glens councillor Kieran Mulholland, who was elected as chair of the Youth Committee, paid tribute to the work of his colleagues in establishing the new cumann and also made reference to the historic nature of the annual general meeting in Ballymena.
Addressing the gathering, Mr Mulholland said: “Tonight is historic not only because it is the inaugural agm of a vibrant new Youth Cumann in North Antrim, but because of its location here in the centre of Ballymena.
“We have chosen to name our cumann after the early 20th century revolutionary Roger Casement who spent much of his youth here in Ballymena.
“At this, the inaugural agm of what is to be known as the Roger Casement Sinn Féin Republican Youth Cumann North Antrim and in the run up to the 1916 celebrations the historic nature of the location of this agm is of much significance,” he said.
The meeting closed with an address by West Tyrone Assemblyman Barry McElduff who commended the youth cumann on their establishment and the success of their first agm.
Mr McElduff said, “The establishment of a youth cumann says a lot about any area.
“It shows that Sinn Féin is vibrant, growing and most importantly relevant to the young people in the area. Looking around the room I see many very talented and capable young men and women.
“These young people, in the diligent work of establishing this very cumann and in the hard work that has taken place over the past few months in conjunction with other youth Cumain across the island have shown true skill and dedication and I look forward to seeing this work continue into 2015,” he said.