Freedom of the City to be conferred on Duncan Stewart and Greta Thunberg tonight
Published on 21st June 2023
The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Caroline Conroy, will tonight confer the Honorary Freedom of the City of Dublin on Duncan Stewart and Greta Thunberg. The ceremony will take place in the Round Room at the Mansion House, Dawson Street, at 7pm.
The Lord Mayor and Dublin City Council are paying tribute to Duncan and Greta for their tireless work in the field of environmental campaigning.
Lord Mayor of Dublin Caroline Conroy said, “I am honoured to present The Freedom of the City to Duncan Stewart and Greta Thunberg. This award is the highest Civic honour Dublin City can bestow. It is a privilege for me to confer the Freedom on these two very deserving recipients, both of whom I admire greatly for their efforts to help us tackle the most pressing global problem of our time.”
Duncan Stewart said, “When the Lord Mayor called me and asked me would I accept a nomination for the award, I was really shocked and certainly very honoured. I would like to thank the Lord Mayor for what she has done, and Dublin City Council in general. Really I don’t deserve it, but certainly when I see Greta Thunberg also on the platform I feel very proud because I have such great admiration for her and all the incredible work she’s doing for our young generation.”
Greta Thunberg will not be collecting her award in person. Jessica Dunne and Sumaya Ahmed, both from the youth climate strike movement in Ireland, will be speaking on her behalf.
Greta and Duncan will both receive gifts from the Lord Mayor. Duncan will be getting ‘Ready to Fly’, an elegant form sculpture crafted from 4,000 year old bog oak by Irish artist Tony Downey. Greta will be receiving a nature-inspired drop pendant comprising 3 delicate gum nuts suspended from a hand-forged hoop by Iris jeweller Shimara Carlow.
The Freedom of the City has previously been conferred on 86 people ranging from Presidents to Prisoners of Conscience to people in Sports and Entertainment. The first recipient of the Freedom of the City was Isaac Butt in 1876. The most recent recipients were Ailbhe Smyth, Professor Mary Aiken and Kellie Harrington in 2022.
**Photographs will be syndicated by Conor McCabe Photography**
Notes to the Editor:
The Lord Mayor of Dublin nominates people for the Freedom of the City. Any nominations are then brought before a meeting of the City Council where they must be ratified by a majority vote.
Irish artist Tony Downey is passionate about majestic black bog oak from the Irish peat lands. He takes inspiration for his pieces from the birds and animals that surround him in his country home in Co. Tipperary. Working exclusively with locally found sections of aged bog oak, he studies each piece carefully until the final form reveals itself to him. By virtue of the age-old natural materials each piece is unique and has its own distinct character.
Originally from West Cork, Shimara Carlow’s childhood fascination for collecting shells, stones, mermaid’s purses, feathers and seed pods found along the sea shore has been the constant inspiration for her work. She makes her nature-inspired jewellery by hand, using recycled silver and gold. Starting from found objects in her environment, the gum-nut is a common theme in her beautiful organic work. She uses oxidized finishes to underscore the circle of life of the original object.