Jim Kirkpatrick

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This article is about Unionist politician. For other uses, see James Kirkpatrick (disambiguation).

Jim Kirkpatrick is a Unionist politician who has represented the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) three times and the Democratic Unionist Party twice.

Kirkpatrick was first elected as a UUP member of the Northern Ireland Assembly for Belfast South in 1982. Three years later he was elected to Belfast City Council, representing the Balmoral electoral area, which covers the Lisburn, Malone and Donegal Road areas of the city.[1]

Kirkpatrick joined the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) in 1996 and lost his council seat in 1997, having moved from Balmoral to Laganbank. He subsequently rejoined the UUP and became chairman of the Drumbo branch in Lagan Valley.[2]

He was selected to contest the elections to the Northern Ireland Assembly in 2003 by Lagan Valley UUP in a controversial selection meeting[3] but polled less than 700 votes and was quickly eliminated .[4]

Following this, in December 2004 he again defected to the DUP and was returned for that party to Belfast City Council in 2005, regaining his original seat in Balmoral. In 2007 however, Kirkpatrick was pictured at a fundraising dinner with Jim Allister MEP, held to raise funds for a new Unionist Party opposed to powersharing.[5] On 2 June 2009 he again defected back to the UUP, accusing senior DUP members of "caring more about dynasty building and expense claims than voters." [6] He lost his seat at the 2011 council elections.

He has also served as High Sheriff before, having fulfilled the role in 1990. He was sworn in again as High Sheriff of Belfast in a traditional ceremony at Belfast City Hall in January 2007, succeeding Councillor William Humphrey.[7]

Kirkpatrick is a member of Malone Presbyterian Church, the Masonic Order and the Orange Order.[7]


  1. ^ ARK
  2. ^ A Tangled Web
  3. ^ BBC report
  4. ^ ARK
  5. ^ Belfast Newsletter, November 27, 2007, p. 8
  6. ^ Irish Times 3 June 2009
  7. ^ a b High Sheriff ceremony
Political offices
Preceded by
Post vacant
High Sheriff of Belfast
Succeeded by
Joe Coggle
Preceded by
William Humphrey
High Sheriff of Belfast
Succeeded by
Margaret McKenzie