Northern Ireland

DUP MP calls for Westminster to honour Dolly Parton amid Windsor Framework drama

AS the DUP has announced its plans to oppose the Windsor Framework and prolong the Stormont deadlock, Strangford MP Jim Shannon also used his mandate to honour Dolly Parton.

On Tuesday, Mr Shannon tabled an Early Day Motion calling for the House of Commons to mark the 50th anniversary of the country icon’s 1974 hit, I Will Always Love You.

The motion asks for MPs to note “the sentiment behind the song and what it means to so many, including the wife of the hon. Member for Strangford; highlights the contribution this song and her music in general to industry.”

Mr Shannon also highlights “the large scale event held at the weekend in Dolly Parton’s multi-million dollar theme park at Pigeon Forge in East Tennessee” to celebrate the anniversary.

Originally written as a farewell to her business partner and mentor Peter Wagoner, the tune was also a global smash for Whitney Houston in 1992.

Attempting to offer optimism to others in difficult times, Mr Shannon said he also “wishes Dolly continued success as she entertains and encourages so many through her music and inspirational character.”

The gesture was not entirely without backing, with 16 MPs supporting the motion including seven from Labour, three SNP, three Liberal Democrats and three Plaid Cymru.

Mr Shannon has been contacted for a response.