Dunloy brethren ‘disgusted’ at parade refusal

editorial image

Dunloy Orangemen have again repeated their anger at the refusal of the Parades Commission to allow them to march from the Orange Hall to the Church to lay a wreath in memory of former brethren and family members.

The Worshipful Master of the Lodge, John Finlay, led the protest on Saturday when he addressed the PSNI who were there to carry out the decision of the Commission.

In a statement, Mr Finlay said: “I wish to place on record our disgust at the on-going denial of our civil and religious liberties.

”For many years now, through the actions of the police and then the Parades Commission, we have been prevented from marching on this day to lay our wreath in memory of our glorious dead.

”We are greatly frustrated and saddened that there are those in our community whose intolerance is such that they will not allow a Protestant parade in the village on this key day in the marching season. Yet these same people want to share power ,when they can’t share an road .

“We are furtherfrustrated and saddened by the willingness of the Parades Commission and the PSNI to pander to that intolerance and to appease those who threaten opposition to our traditional parade.

”The refusal to allow us to parade to the Church l once again this morning is a total disgrace and ought not to happen in a free and democratic society.

”As law-abiding members of the Loyal Orange Institution, we have no desire to confront the forces of law and order, but this should not be regarded as a sign of weakness on our part. We are angered and hurt by the decision to restrict us here this morning, and justice demands that this situation must not be allowed to continue.

”To this end we fully support the Grand orange Lodge of Ireland and the Unionists family in their plan of action to have or liberties restored.”

The band and brethren later marched in Ballymoney and are looking forward to their annual parade in the town on July 26 which is expected to be one of the biggest parades in the town during the marching season.