Under a proposal by Councillor for Oldpark Dean Pankhurst, Glenbryn Playpark would be named Corey Jack Aughey Memorial Park in tribute to the six year old local boy who played regularly in the council park, and who tragically died in an accident in Spain in June.
Elected representatives at Belfast City Council ’s recent People and Communities Committee heard the motion, which states: “This council notes with deep sadness the passing of Corey Aughey on holiday in June 2022. We also note that Corey was a well known and loving character within the Glenbryn area of North Belfast.
“As such, this council will move to rename 'Glenbryn Playpark' as the 'Corey Jack Aughey Memorial Park' as a fitting tribute in his memory. The council will also agree to install a memory bench in his name within the park.” Councillors agreed for a report to come back on the proposal, including council policy on decision making and options in relation to naming parks.
Corey, from North Belfast, spent three days in intensive care before passing away after falling into a swimming pool in Majorca during the summer.
In a statement after the tragic loss in June, father Colin and mother Leanne stated: “Following the tragic death of our beloved son, Corey Aughey, we have been overwhelmed by the immense support provided by the local community.
“The volume of messages of condolences from right across the community has provided us with some comfort in these extremely difficult circumstances.”
Councillor Pankhurst, who is retiring from local politics before next year’s council elections, was not at the committee meeting to speak to his motion.
A council officer, when asked what council policy was on the naming of parks, replied: “The criterion presently says the person must have made a significant contribution to the life of the area, city, or made a significant positive contribution to the parks and leisure objectives within the community.
“The person must have been deceased for a minimum of five years. If a person is still alive they have made a significant financial contribution to the improvement or development of the park’s facility.”
The officer added: “We would need to review this in terms of policy.”
In August Belfast’s newest functioning bridge was renamed after Noah Donohoe, after a big public response during consultation. The 14 year old was found dead in a storm drain in north Belfast in 2020 and since then has been at the centre of widespread concern about the nature of his death and how it happened. The South Belfast bridge, which spans the Lagan from the Annadale Avenue area to the towpath at Stranmillis, was opened last year.
The public was asked to suggest names for the bridge in a consultation last year with more than 1,600 people getting in touch. According to the council portal, the vast majority of suggestions were for a name remembering Noah.