ONE of Northern Ireland’s finest and most successful actors Ciaran Hinds has been awarded with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement accolade at the Ulster Tatler Awards in association with Optilase Eye Clinic, which took place last night (Thursday) in Belfast’s iconic City Hall.

The Game Of Thrones star flew into town to pick up the award which in the past has been won by a host of local legends including Dame Mary Peters, James Galway, Brian Friel, Phil Coulter, Gloria Hunniford, Michael Longley, Gerry Armstrong, Barry McGuigan, Terri Hooley and Marie Jones.

Hinds is no stranger to being recognised for his talents in drama, having picked up The Theatre World New York Award for best debut in Closer in 1999, as well as picking up Best Actor at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2009.  In 2014 he also returned to Queens University to pick up an honorary degree for his services to film and drama.

Belfast-born Ciaran studied law at Queen’s University before he left to embark on his acting career at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, where he graduated in 1975.


His film debut came in 1981 with ‘Excalibur’ where he starred alongside Dame Helen Mirren, Gabriel Byrne and his life-long friend, Liam Neeson.

With a career that extends over three decades, his film appearances have included some of the most prevalent films of our time, including Harry PotterFrozenJustice LeagueLara Croft Tomb RaiderThere Will Be BloodRoad to PerditionTinker Tailor Soldier SpyThe Sum of all FearsIn Bruges, to name but a few.

Ciaran has acted alongside some of the world’s biggest stars including Morgan Freeman, Tom Hanks, Colin Firth, Angelina Jolie, Nicole Kidman, Helena Bonham Carter, Ben Affleck, Gary Oldman, Jennifer Lawrence, Cate Blanchett, Sigourney Weaver, Scarlett Johansson, and many more.

With two new films out this Autumn, Hinds is as in-demand as ever, being on call for some of the world’s leading directors Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Danny Boyle and Sam Mendes.

He has just finished playing the part of charismatic school master Hugh, in the National Theatre’s revival of Translations, which was written by 2009 Ulster Tatler Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, the late Brian Friel.

Ulster Tater editor Chris Sherry said that Hinds was an extremely worthy winner of the evening’s pivotal award.

“I have huge admiration for Ciaran as a Belfast-bred Hollywood success,” said Chris.  “He is one of the most respected stage and screen actors in the business, and the list of films that he has starred in, along with the actors and directors that he has worked with, reflects a truly extraordinary career.

“Importantly, Ciaran is also a marvellous ambassador for Northern Ireland and someone who, in every way, represents the essence of what our Lifetime Achievement Award is all about,” he added.

Awards host Pamela Ballantine delivered the citation for the award to a full house of more than 400 guests at Belfast City Hall, reliving the exciting life to date of the inspiring Ciaran Hinds.

Other big winners on the night included World Superbike Champion Jonathan Rea, who was named Sportsperson of the Year in a hotly-contested category that also included boxing champion Carl Frampton, gymnast Rhys McClenaghan and Ulster and Ireland rugby aces Rory Best and Jacob Stockdale.

Ulster, Ireland and British Lions legend Tommy Bowe was awarded The Bank of Ireland Special Merit Award on the night for his services to rugby for both Ulster and Ireland.  This award has been previously awarded to former Ulster Rugby coach Brian McLaughlin, the Northern Ireland football team and Ulster Rugby legend Ruan Piennaar.

The Celebrity of the Year award was won by much-loved local star Pamela Ballantine who was also the glamourous host on the night.

The evening, wasn’t short of ‘glitz and glamour’ as Ulster Rugby’s Luke Marshall and Luis Ludvik joined Ireland hockey squad ladies Katie Mullan, Zoe Wilson, Lizzie Colvin and Shirley McKay on the A-list guest list.

Well known faces Barra Best, Miss Northern Ireland Katharine Walker and The Lord Mayor also stepped out to celebrate at the City Hall venue.

“This year’s awards were particularly difficult to judge as the standard of local talent in Northern Ireland seems to get higher every year and every single category was bursting with worthy nominees,” said Ulster Tatler editor Chris Sherry.

“I want to extend huge congratulations to the winners from each category and all those shortlisted, who should all be extremely proud of what they have achieved within their businesses throughout the last year.  I also want to personally thank everyone for their support.

“This year we are celebrating the eleventh year of the Ulster Tatler Awards and the event was a complete sell-out so really we couldn’t have asked for more.  The night was a massive success!” added Chris.

Winners in other categories included Radiance Beauty and Day Spa which lifted Beauty Salon / Spa of the Year and Titanic Hotel which received the award for Hotel of the YearLilyRose Boutique which was presented with Fashion Boutique of the YearDonna Monteith of Monteith Interiors who was named Interior Designer of the YearKillinchy House took the award for House of the YearWeir Travel was awarded with Independent Travel Agent of the YearShauna McAuley Hair which was named Hairdressing Salon of the YearThe Ivory was awarded Restaurant of the who took the award for Website of the YearThe House Bar which snapped up the title of Pub of the YearConor Cole of Cole Groundwork who earned himself Business Man of the Year and Roisin McFeely of Amazing Brains who was named Business Woman of the Year.

PACEMAKER, BELFAST, 6/9/2018: Lizzie Colvin, Zoe Wilson, Katie Mullan and Shirley McCay from the history-making Ireland hockey team pictured at the

The Ulster Tatler Awards 2018 were sponsored by Optilase Eye Clinic, Duffy Rafferty Communications, Zen Day Spa, Hafele, Denman, Linwoods, Carlanto, Acorn IT Solutions, Saville Audio Visual, Corick House Hotel & Spa, Mervyn Stewart, Insanity Tan, Bank of Ireland, Jack Murphy Jewellers, W&G Baird, ND Events and U105. 

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  1. I can’t think of a more deserving person to receive the prestigious award of Lifetime Achievement. Not only is Ciarán Hinds a very fine actor, he is also a very decent member of the human race. Considered by his fellow thespians as an ‘Actors Actor’ for his generosity of spirit & his willingness to share his knowledge & experience he is held in high regard by all who work with him. An amazing ambassador for Irish Youth & so giving of his time & his Art. I was privileged to see him in Brian Friel’s Translations@ the National Theatre, playing the charismatic Hugh, where he gave a majestic & mighty performance, particularly in his monologue in the second Act & the truly wonderful wordplay betwixt himself & Jimmy Jack (Dermot Crowley) is just ‘Precious’ ‘Athene & Zeus’…lingers long in the memory. I also had a chat with him about the accolades AMC’s ‘The Terror’ was receiving…His response, characteristically, was that ‘It was n’t all his fault!’ Many Congratulations Ciaran & Thank you for all your wonderful performances… #Top Man….

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