Live updates

Ulster captain Best leads tributes to Nevin Spence

"Nevin was a team player. The sort of player that every team needs but few are lucky enough to truly find.

"This was obvious every time he ran out at Ravenhill because Nevin loved rugby, he loved representing his province, the fans, his neighbours, his church and especially his family.

"Nev has left Ulster Rugby in a much better place than he found it and as a player, a colleague and friend, his memory will continue to shape Ulster Rugby for years to come. Nev, we will miss you but we will never forget you."

– Rory Best, Ulster Rugby captain

Advertisement

Rugby fans gather to remember Nevin Spence

Fans paid tribute to Ulster player Nevin Spence at Ravenhill on Sunday Credit: Sky News

Thousands of rugby fans have gathered at Belfast's Ravenhill ground for a memorial service for Ulster player Nevin Spence, who was killed last weekend in a farming accident.

The 22-year-old was overcome by slurry gas fumes and died along with his brother and father at their farm in Hillsborough.

Rugby star's family funerals take place in Northern Ireland

The funerals of Ulster Rugby player Nevin Spence, his father Noel and brother Graham, have taken place in Ballynahinch, Co Down.

The three men died after falling into a slurry tank at their farm at Hillsborough in Northern Ireland on Saturday.

Nevin Spence's coffin is covered with his Ulster Rugby jersey after his funeral service Credit: Paul Faith/PA Wire
The family of Nevin, Noel and Graham Spence walk behind the three coffins. Credit: Paul Faith/PA Wire
The three coffins leave Ballynahinch Baptist church, in Co Down after the funeral service Credit: Paul Faith/PA Wire

Advertisement

Sister's tribute to 'gentlemen' who died in slurry tank accident

Emma Spence has spoken at the funeral of her father and two brothers, telling mourners that they were "gentlemen."

Emma had twice tried to save her family from the slurry tank were they died before being overcome by fumes herself.

At the funeral at Ballynahinch Baptist Church, she said:

They were gentlemen. They were hard-working men.

They were not perfect but they were genuine. They were best friends.

They were Godly men - they didn't talk about God, they just did God.

They were just ordinary - but God made them extraordinary.

Ulster Rugby club to hold a memorial service for Nevin Spence

Ulster Rugby club will hold a memorial service for Nevin Spence at Ravenhill Stadium on Sunday 23rd September at 3pm.

The funerals of Nevin Spence, and his father and brother - who died after falling into a slurry tank at their farm at Hillsborough in Northern Ireland -are taking place today.

Having spoken with the family it was felt appropriate to offer the wider community in Ulster an opportunity to celebrate the life of Nevin, a much loved member of the Ulster squad.

Sister's brave efforts to rescue family from slurry tank

It has emerged that the sister of Ulster rugby star Nevin Spence who died alongside his father and brother in a farming tragedy on Saturday, bravely attempted to rescue her family.

Emma Spence twice climbed into a manhole and then down into a slurry tank on the family farm near Hillsborough, Co Down, where her father Noel, 68, and brothers, Graham, 30, and Nevin, 22, all died trying to save each other.

A tribute to young rugby star Nevin Spence and brother Graham and father Noel Credit: Paul Faith/PA Wire

Miss Spence, managed to pull her father on to the ladder where she was assisted by neighbours. They immediately tried to resuscitate Noel.

She then went back a second time and found Graham in the tank lying in two to three feet of slurry. But she was then overcome by the odourless fumes and had to be pulled free by the frantic neighbours who ran to the tank after hearing the calls for help.

The funerals of the three men will be held in Ballynahinch, Co Down, later today.

Funeral of Ulster rugby star Nevin Spence to take place today

Nevin Spence was killed after he fell into a slurry tank on Saturday Credit: John Dickson/Ulster Rugby/PA Wire

Rugby players and officials from across Ireland are expected to attend the funerals today of Ulster star Nevin Spence, and his father and brother who died in a farming tragedy on Saturday.

There will be a private service in the family home followed by a service of thanksgiving at the Baptist Church in Ballynahinch, Co Down.

Load more updates