Calls for calm before Armagh parade

Published Friday, 16 March 2012
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Police have appealed for the support of all communities in Armagh ahead of the loyalist band parade, which is set to go through the city on St Patrick's Day.

Calls for calm before Armagh parade
The parade has been met with divided opinion. (© Pacemaker)

The march by the Cormeen Rising Sons of William Flute band will take place between 7.30pm and 9.30pm on Saturday.

It was given the go-ahead last week by the Parades Commission, despite opposition from nationalist politicians. The ruling was later upheld.

Thousands of people are expected to be in Armagh for the main St Patrick's parade, which will take place before the loyalist event.

In a statement, the PSNI said its officers will be on patrol throughout the day.

"I am aware of concerns from some groups in relation to a band parade scheduled to take place in the city on the evening of St Patrick's Day," said Chief Superintendent Alasdair Robinson.

"Previously this parade has taken place in Killylea but as numbers have grown the organisers have moved to bring it into the bigger venue of the city; similar to many other parades which take place without incident throughout the year.

I would ask all of those with influence in the community to work with us to ensure that all events are equally supported and respected throughout the course of the day.

Chief Superintendent Alasdair Robinson

Sinn Féin MP for the area Conor Murphy has appealed for calm ahead of St Patrick's Day.

"The decision to allow a loyalist band parade through Armagh on St Patrick's Day is flawed at the most fundamental level," Mr Murphy said.

"The PSNI and Parades Commission have said that they are satisfied that this parade is non controversial and while I do not believe this to be the case I would appeal to all those in Armagh tomorrow to remain cool headed."

Earlier this week, Cormeen Rising Sons of William Flute Band said they will fully comply with the determination of the Parades Commission.

Police say they hope this year's celebrations in Armagh can run as smoothly as they have in the past.

"As with all celebrations planned for St Patrick's Day we will provide appropriate support and assistance", Chief Superintendent Alasdair Robinson said.

© UTV News
Comments Comments
17 Comments
on the fence in passing wrote (1,005 days ago):
I suppose it all depends on what one considers to be Irish.
JP in Newry wrote (1,005 days ago):
Congratulation to the organisers of cross community in Armagh City for the St Patrick Day Parade. The Kilalay loyalist missed a happy large event that is celebrated Golbel and green showned everywhere and wearing of the shamrock of Ireland Saint proudly as a people and it was noted most of cross ommunity injoyed celebrating together
JP in newry wrote (1,005 days ago):
Things do not change much in Armagh with loyalists of 17th century Dutch william of Oange noted i see the PSNI supported them to parades Commission How is this anything to connect for St Patrick day is controversal. Suppreme oarngeism indeed. I note, when the council organised Crosscommunity Patrick day parade earier and the loyalists was not supporting the event of the saint Patrick day parade instead they were celebrating William of Orange at 7.30pm to 9.30pm. I am happy to say paddy day is globel and wearing of the green and most people and cross community wore something green and the sharmrock proudly ln identy with Patrick great day.
JP in Newry wrote (1,005 days ago):
The controversy is the loyalist band defenders of William was not in the spirit of St Patrik day,and clearly was about the 17th Century While the rest of community came together on St Patrick day all over Ireland events and had injoyable happy spirit and proud to be associated with Irish identy, The St Patrick day was largest remarkable event in the world wearing of Sharmrock, globel event celebrated in the green colours to mark the Irish paddy day of our Saint Patrick for Ireland
ulster girl in armagh wrote (1,007 days ago):
i was in armagh tonight for the second parade and it went off peaceful apart from a few yobs jumping out in front of the bands trying to act the hardmen, where is that gonna get them jail for the night criminal record maybe,as far as im aware the only arrests made were catholics trying to start trouble as soon as the parade was over we left the town as did everyone else, to all the nosey busy bodies out there giving off bout having the parade have ye nothing better to worry about like theres better things to worry about than ohh theres protestant bands down the town get over yourselves and worry bout the things that really matter in life
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