Belfast Telegraph

£1.5m Sinn Fein donor's ashes are buried in west Belfast

The memorial to William Edward Hampton at St Joseph’s Church, Hannahstown Cemetery in west Belfast
The memorial to William Edward Hampton at St Joseph’s Church, Hannahstown Cemetery in west Belfast
William Edward Hampton

By Cate McCurry

The Englishman who left £1.5m to Sinn Fein had his ashes buried in west Belfast, it has emerged.

The party received the money from the will of William E Hampton, a party supporter living in Wales. It was paid in two instalments of £1m and £500,000 in April and May.

The contribution is the largest known donation given to a political party in Northern Ireland.

Mr Hampton (inset), who was not married and did not have children, left some money to friends and acquaintances, but the main beneficiary of the will was Sinn Fein.

It is understood that he spent some time living in Ireland and was a long-time supporter of the party before his death on January 11, 2018 at his home in Pembrokeshire, Wales, at the age of 82.

Mr Hampton's headstone is in Hannahstown Cemetery.

It reads: "True friend of Ireland. Remembered by his friends and comrades in Sinn Fein." The Irish News reported that an interment ceremony took place last year and was attended by senior members of the party.

As part of the instructions in Mr Hampton's will, £1,000 each was given to Labour MP Dennis Skinner and Private Eye investigative journalist Paul Halloran. Another £6,000 was donated to two English residents.

Last week Sinn Fein president Mary Lou McDonald said the money was bequeathed to Sinn Fein "within all of the rules and regulations and will be spent within the rules and regulations".

Belfast Telegraph

From Belfast Telegraph