UDR memorial parade details

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A new memorial to those who served in the Ulster Defence Regiment will be dedicated in Ballymena today.

Former members of the Regiment, which was finally amalgamated into the Royal Irish Regiment, will travel from all over Northern Ireland and further afield for the unveiling of the monument in the town’s Memorial Gardens.

They will be joined by members of various other ex-service organisations in a parade through the town.

The parade, which will be led by the Bugles, Pipes and Drums of the Royal Irish, will assemble at Ballymena Services’ Club at 2pm and march off at 2.30pm. The route will be Castle Street, Bridge Street, Waveney Road to the Memorial Park.

A service of dedication is due to begin around 2.50pm with the unveiling being performed by the Lord Lieutenant, Mrs. Joan Christie.

Afterwards, the parade will reform and march into the town centre where the salute will be taken in Wellington Street. It will then proceed down Church Street and into Bridge Street before breaking up at The Braid Arts Centre. Refreshments for those taking part in the parade will be provided in the centre.

The secretary of the Ballymena branch, UDR Association, Robert McClean said the new memorial was a ‘fitting tribute to all who served in the regiment’.