Hymns allowed past church during parade

Published Wednesday, 17 October 2012
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Bands are allowed to play hymns as they pass St Patrick's Church in Belfast during an upcoming Orange Order parade, despite claims that a similar ruling in the area was broken at a previous parade.

Hymns allowed past church during parade
Bandsmen pass protesters at St Patrick''s Church during a previous parade. (© Pacemaker)

The County Grand Orange Lodge of Belfast parade will commemorate the anniversary of the Protestant Reformation on Sunday 28 October, the parade will comprise of four bands and approximately 400 participants.

Last month bands were permitted to play hymns when passing the church during the Orange Order's Ulster Covenant centenary parade.

The parade went off peacefully but residents claimed a number of bandsmen broke the Parades Commission's determination. They said they heard the Sash being played before the end of the stretch, and claimed some bandsmen acted in a provocative way.

Seven police officers were hurt when trouble broke out and in the area during a Black Preceptory parade on 25 August, when bands broke a Parades Commission ruling that only a single drumbeat should be played passing the church and another was banned from passing.

The Parades Commission have determined that hymns can be played on Donegall Street passing the Catholic Church on 28 October, while they must play no more than a single drumbeat from the junction of the Westlink until a junction at Clifton Street, where surrounding Carrick Hill residents live, on both outward and return routes.

No supporters shall accompany the parade on its notified route in this area.

The parade organisers shall ensure that where the majority population of the vicinity are of a different tradition, and in interface areas, behaviour must be respectful; there must be no loud drumming; participants must refrain from conduct, words, music or behaviour which could reasonably be perceived as intentionally sectarian, provocative, threatening, abusive, insulting or lewd; and marching must be dignified.

Parades Commission

The parades watchdog said they were disappointed that no representation was made by the Orange Order nor were they given "any assurances in relation to the type of music that will be played when passing a sensitive area".

They also said they were disappointed that there had been no direct contact between the Orange Order and the Carrick Hill residents "despite there being no inhibitors to this dialogue taking place".

They also stated there had been no representation from Unionist politicians on the issue.

"The Commission expects this to be rectified as soon as possible, in the very near future," a statement read.

A protest organised by Carrick Hill Concerned Residents Committee has also been permitted with protestors to assemble on the footpath of an area of Donegall Street, outside St Patrick's Church and on a part of Stanhope Street.

No more than 100 people will be allowed to participate, with stewards to ensure behaviour is appropriate.

Controversy surrounding the parade point arose on 12 July when members of a loyalist band were filmed marching in circles and playing a tune alleged to be sectarian outside the church.

© UTV News
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23 Comments
Mark in Belfast wrote (547 days ago):
Get used to it, the more you republicans provoke, whinge, insult, complain, and try to prevent loyalist culture the more parades there will be. Keep it up, its a fantasic way to attract new band members and OO members!! Thanks, lol
Stephen in Portadown wrote (547 days ago):
People come onto these forums stating that parade organisers should foot the bill for parades, This could happen in the future but what I would like to see is protesters footing the bill for their counter demonstrations and the resulting violence and destructions that ensues which inevitably happens as a result of bringing a rent a mob onto the streets. What is so offensive about Loyal Orders parading to a place of Worship? How can this threaten your health and well-being? How can this threaten your security and safety in your own home? The answer is it cannot but bigotry and hatred from Republican led residents groups wont allow freedoms for Loyal Order parades. All we seek is parity of esteem! At least we abide within the law when applying for parades the same certainly cannot be said of Republican parades/protests.
martha wright in uk wrote (548 days ago):
in reply to seamus and martin ....its because there is protests against these lawful parades that the police have to be there , in other towns and villages theres maybe only a couple of police sometimes just the one to police the parade , so maybe its time to stop being such idiots and think things through a little more
GARY in BELFAST wrote (548 days ago):
THE PARADE WOULD COST HARDLY NOTHING TO THE POLICE IF REPUBLICAN TROUBLEMAKERS DIDNT GO OUT OF THEIR WAY TO PROTEST ALL THE TIME AGAINST THE LOYAL ORDERS WHEN THEY HAVE A PARADE
Ryan in Belfast wrote (548 days ago):
ANOTHER parade? How many times do these people have to have parades? Ok, everyones entitled to express their culture but only in a respectful way (which these bands usually fail to do) but this is getting out of hand, if their going to parade this many times a year, its time the bands footed the police bill.
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