Celebration was the order of the day as the Belfast 40 Under 40 gathered, rather appropriately, in the Great Hall at Queen’s University to be honoured for their sterling contribution to our city.

Young people from a range of professions were represented, from teachers to technicians, entrepreneurs to engineers, sports heroes to music heroes, recognised for the contribution they continue to make to our society and economy.

Guest speaker, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Michelle O’Neill, the youngest MLA in the Stormont Executive, spoke of the Belfast 40 Under 40 as “a great concept, promoting a new generation of city leaders, proving that everyone has something to offer.”

Winners on the afternoon included:

Jobs For All Award: Gary McKay, Manager of Job Assist

Social Economy Award: Ciara Brennan UnLtd

People’s Choice Award: Dominic Hanvey, Fáilte Restaurant

Building Belfast Award: Professor Pedro Rebelo, Queen’s University

Special Achievement in Education: Emer Mhic an Fhaili

Spirit of Tomorrow’s Belfast Award: Helen McKeever, Community Foundation for Northern Ireland

Belfast Ambassador Award: Claire Trainor of the Northern Ireland Hospice