Northern Ireland

Lord Ballyedmond: Reaction to death of NI peer

Lord Ballyedmond

Tributes have been paid to millionaire businessman Lord Ballyedmond, one of Northern Ireland's richest men, who was one of four people killed in a helicopter crash in Norfolk. He founded Norbrook Laboratories, a highly successful pharmaceuticals company and built an extensive property portfolio.

Peter Robinson, Northern Ireland first minister

"Dr Edward Haughey was a great ambassador for Northern Ireland. He worked tirelessly to develop the globally respected Norbrook Laboratories. As a result of his vision and leadership he created employment opportunities for many people in Northern Ireland."

Martin McGuinness, Northern Ireland deputy first minister

"I know the passing of Eddie Haughey will be acutely felt in the Newry and wider County Down area where his entrepreneurial spirit was a catalyst for economic development in the area. Eddie was a highly motivated man with immense business skills and my thoughts and prayers are with his family at this most difficult time."

Lord Trimble, Ulster Unionist peer

"I met Edward Haughey a number of times as a member of parliament for an adjoining area.

"He deserved recognition because what he did, starting a business, growing it to the extent that Norbrook did, employing nearly 2,000 people and making a huge contribution to the economy, and he deserved recognition for that and I'm delighted to see that he got it."

Lord Empey, Ulster Unionist peer

"I've known the Haughey family for 25 years. Lord Ballyedmond was one of the most successful entrepreneurs in Northern Ireland and indeed these islands. He brought high-quality employment opportunities to this country during its darkest days.

"This tragic accident has cut short the life of a man who had still much to give. The family circle will be numbed by the tragedy. They are in our thoughts and prayers and I would like to offer the family, deepest sympathies from the Ulster Unionist Party."

Conor Murphy, Newry and Mourne MP

"My father was a veterinary chemist in Newry and would have known Eddie Haughey. Really he had very humble beginnings as a shop boy in Newry and my father would have known him then. He told me he credits my father with giving him his first contract in terms of getting into the veterinary business himself.

"Of course, as an elected representative for the area, I had many occasions to meet him and engage with him, and to cross swords with him on occasion. I found him to be someone who was very firm and fixed in his views, but he also respected the fact that I had fairly firm and fixed views myself and we got on quite well."

Theresa Villiers, NI Secretary of State

"My sincere sympathies to the family of Lord Ballyedmond and all those who lost their lives in the helicopter crash in Norfolk.

"Lord Ballyedmond created many jobs and opportunities in Northern Ireland through his leadership of Norbrook Laboratories, as well as serving with distinction in the Irish Senate and later in the House of Lords. His loss will be felt by many across Northern Ireland including the business community."

Arlene Foster, DUP MLA and Enterprise Minister

"Without doubt, Lord Ballyedmond was one of Northern Ireland's most successful entrepreneurs, and he was known for his leadership, integrity and global vision. One-of-a-kind and a self-made businessman, he was both highly regarded and widely respected by all those who knew him.

"Norbrook Laboratories currently exports to more than 120 countries worldwide and Lord Ballyedmond worked tirelessly to promote Northern Ireland as an investment location. Not only has he made a huge contribution to the local economy but Lord Ballyedmond also devoted much of his time to charitable works and this is to be highly commended.

"Lord Ballyedmond will be sadly missed and his passing is a great loss to both the business and wider community."

Jim Nicholson, Ulster Unionist MEP

"I have known Lord Ballyedmond for a long time and I am shocked and deeply saddened by his untimely death in this tragic accident.

"He was one of Northern Ireland's most successful businessmen, building up a company which became a global leader in a highly competitive industry. His contribution to Northern Ireland will not be forgotten. My thoughts and prayers are with the Haughey family at this very sad time."

Micheál Martin, Fianna Fáil leader

"His contribution to the world of business and politics, in particular his work in the lead up to the Good Friday agreement, mark him out as an important figure in the progress of peace and prosperity on the island of Ireland over the past two decades."

US government

"The United States was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Lord Ballyedmond and others.

"Through his stewardship and dedication to excellence, Norbrook become a global force in veterinary pharmaceutical research and manufacturing. His achievements brought significant employment to Northern Ireland and in other places around the world, while his philanthropic endeavours helped improve the quality of life of countless others."

Flag at half mast
A flag was flown at half-mast at the Norbrook Laboratories plant on Friday

Dominic Bradley, SDLP MLA for Newry and Armagh

"Lord Ballyedmond's death is a huge blow to his family and friends and to his employees in Newry and elsewhere. He was one of our main employers and a mainstay of the economy in the city of Newry and district providing upwards of 1,500 well-paid jobs in his three factories and research facilities locally."

Colin Walsh, chairman Northern Ireland CBI

"Eddie Haughey was one of the great characters of Northern Irish business who stood out on the world stage as a leader in his field, and as one of the premier businesspeople of his generation. He was also a great proponent of Northern Ireland, its people and its economic potential throughout his career."

Simon Hamilton, NI Finance Minister

"I didn't have the privilege of knowing Eddie Haughey personally, but I don't think you had to know him personally to know what a positive impact he had had on Northern Ireland, and what an excellent entrepreneur he was, and what a huge contribution he made, not only to his home area round Newry, but the whole of Northern Ireland."

Margaret Ritchie, South Down SDLP MP

"He was a major employer in the County Down area and invested a lot of money.

"He got up and at it and he possessed those attributes required to make you a successful businessman, but he also was a major employer and a lot of families had connections with him through that."

David Ford, Alliance Party leader

"I would like to extend my sympathies to the families and friends of the four people who have died in this tragic accident.

"I was deeply saddened to hear that Lord Ballyedmond had died. This is desperately sad news, not just for his family but for everyone involved in Norbrook Laboratories. He made an enormous contribution to the Northern Ireland economy over the years."

NI Conservatives' co-chairmen, Irwin Armstrong and Trevor Ringland

"Everyone in the Conservative family in Northern Ireland is shocked and saddened at Lord Ballyedmond's death. He was a valued colleague and a strong supporter of the party in Northern Ireland.

"He was an inspiration for local entrepreneurs and his company, Norbrook, represented the best of what Northern Ireland's private sector has to offer. We need more people like him in our society. It's desperately sad to learn of his untimely death."

Basil McCrea, leader NI21

"He was a wonderful promoter of this part of the world and it will be a lesser place without him. Lord Ballyedmond's achievements embody the best of Northern Ireland and our talent. Having spent considerable time in his company I know that he had a clear vision of what Northern Ireland could achieve."

Stephen Kelly, chief executive, Manufacturing Northern Ireland

"Lord Ballyedmond was a committed supporter of the Manufacturing NI campaign, sharing our ambition that we should create the most competitive region in Europe in which to start, sustain and grow a manufacturing business, creating wealth and work.

"Like most of our manufacturing businesses, Norbrook Laboratories was created by, and with local people, but Edward had the vision and the determination and created a truly global, innovative business employing thousands of people. His leadership and vision will be missed by all of us."

Dr Peter FitzGerald, Randox managing director

"I knew Lord Ballyedmond for many years. When I was endeavouring to start Randox Laboratories in the early 1980s I went to him for advice. He was of great help to me in the early years of Randox. Eddie and I would frequently discuss business issues and the challenges of managing international business in Northern Ireland. I had great admiration for his courage and enterprise; he will be sadly missed."

Prof Richard Barnett, vice-chancellor University of Ulster

"Lord Ballyedmond was a friend and benefactor of the university for many years, and an honorary graduate.

"His strong commitment to partnership between industry and academia inspired him to support the creation of a Chair in Pharmaceutical Science, and an annual postgraduate scholarship in the field of pharmaceutical research at the university. We are diminished by his loss."

Science Jobs @ScienceJobs

"Sad to hear of Edward Haughey's sudden passing. He did a huge amount of work for science and industry in Ireland."

British Veterinary Association

"Very sad to hear of the death of Lord Ballyedmond. Huge contribution to veterinary medicine and a real friend to BVA and wider profession."

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