Putting the lunatics back in the asylum

There was a delightful article in the Sunday Times Culture supplement a couple of weeks ago. I’m sorry I cannot link to it, but it described Rostrevor and the annual Fiddler’s Green Festival in pastoral and most attractive terms. A village Joyce is said to have called ‘tip top’, and a festival called the ‘hidden gem in Ireland’s festival circuit’. But all is not what it seems.Just past midnight, I walked my dog through the village, and was met by a youth with his penis in his hand, intimidating 2 young women. He threatened me and them, and proceeded to urinate over all of us as he walked away. It appears that the police had been called to the village at 8pm, but had been stoned and attacked by a group of 30 youths. Later last night, 2 men were attacked on their way home from Brian Kennedy’s concert and were left on the side of the road with serious head injuries. I first learned of this on my way to Belfast this morning when I saw the SOCOs on the road doing a finger tip search.

When the police called for back up last night, they were told that no TSG units were available for Rostrevor. So the village was left in the grip of a drunken rampage, with no protection at all. Street drinking, public disorder and general mayhem was what was left.

There is no excuse for 2 sets of rules. If we look to place order and control on Unionist parades and celebrations, we should do the same for all events where there is a likelihood for public disorder. I found it shocking and shaking that when you let the genie out of the bottle, you are left with feral youths who can control, intimidate and attack without any fear of being stopped.

The doctor and solicitor who were attacked are now said to be in much better condition and out of danger. 4 men and a woman are under arrest.

But having created this vaccum of law and order, is this what we are left with? Fear of being out of our houses?

Drunken disorderly behaviour is not the curse of any one community. It is the curse of us all. A concerted and coordinated effort is required now to make sure we do not let the lunatics continue to run the asylum, and we must take our towns, villages and streets back to ourselves, no matter where we live.

  • Aquifer

    Dogs worked quite well when some enthusiastic unionists attempted to invade Stormont a while back. Could be a bit unfair on the beasts though.

  • ben

    I’m always impressed by where Norn Ironers can find whataboutery, and truly this is whataboutery on an epic scale. This is fantastic. A drunken-disorderly incident somewhere is related to the policing of Orange marches, obviously! Genius.

  • Miss Fitz

    Ben
    I am not sure this is whataboutery as such. To me its more about accepting the real problems we face as communities. We have made bogey men of so many things, but the reality is that there are problems of an epic scale facing us now that need to be dealt with.

    Attempted murder, indecent assualt and public disorder transcend ‘drunken disorderly’.

    The point I am trying to make is that keeping the police out of districts for so long has resulted in lawlessnes that is now threatening to devour us

  • ben

    And the point I’m making is that dragging Unionist parades into this discussion is classic Norn Iron whataboutery. What you had to say could have stood perfectly well on its own merit, but, no, you had to bring in some sectarian baggage and posturing to muddy the water and slander people by the sordid implication that those who don’t like Unionist parades on their street accept and condone this sort of behaviour. You just can’t let it alone, you can’t discuss any issue, any incident, without invoking the usual tired tribalism. So, well done, another petty what-about point scored at the expense of what should have been the substantive issue. You just can’t let it alone.

  • Miss Fitz

    Ben
    You miss my point entirely, and I am sorry about that. I am simply making the point that whatever standards we impose or seek to impose for one section ought to hold for all.

    In short, we need to accept and realise that there are societal problems that have been subsumed to tribalism. In the end, if we do not tackle them in a united fashion we are all lost

  • slug

    Ben

    Miss Fitz is a very fair minded contributor and I think you have completely misinterpreted what she said. As IQ test points out, she was saying that OO parades are actually scrutinised so much that we often hold them to a higher standard than other events. She has posted her thoughts on OO parades from a broad nationalist perspective in the past and (speaking from a unionist perspective) I thought she was admirably fair and constructive.

  • snakebrain

    I thought it was a bit pompous and tendentious, and yes, it did smack a bit of whataboutery. Was there any need for the OO reference to make the point stand?

    I don’t see any..

    Totally agree that drunken thugs are the curse of this land btw.

    I’m just back from Italy where you can have a drink anywhere within reason, and a bit miffed to be denied the right to have a cold one in botanic gardens on a sunny afternoon. Apparently nobody’s allowed because it’s the only way to stop the 24 Carlsberg brigade.

    Am I the only one who thinks that’s idiotic?

  • exile

    Excellent posting from all but Ben.
    It is another example of just how much work there is to do in order to make northern ireland a normal society. Of course, there are pockets of lawlessness in most societies, but the fact that a large festival like this was not properly policed is obviously a major failure.

  • exile

    snakebrain,
    I agree about the embarrassing differences between us and more civilised continental cultures, but the reference to the OO was an encouragement to nationalists (of which I am one) to see the log in their own eyes, rather than the mote in someone else’s. Not an attack on the OO, quite the opposite.

  • Dawkins

    Miss Fitz,

    The police couldn’t come to Rostrevor, they having been worn out by the tough business of trapping otherwise law-abiding citizens breaking the speed limit on the motorways and dual carriageways — often by 5mph or more!

    I know. I was one of them :0(

  • missfitz

    Dawkins
    Dont even start me on that subject.

    I was almost arrested a couple of weeks ago on a motoring offence. When I sought some advice from a contact in Garnerville as to why such an extreme reaction was warranted, I was informed I had failed the new PSNI ‘attitude’ test.

    When I was pulled over, the officer asked me about 10 times ‘how can I teach you the lesson’. I finally told him to hurry the f*** up as I needed to go somewhere, whereupon I found my hands on the roof of my car.

    I was disgusted beyond words to be told that the PSNI ‘refused’ to send TSG to Rostrevor last night to aid colleagues, and ordered them to pull out. What a nonsense, and why is no one complaining

  • snakebrain

    MissFitz

    I do believe there’s a shiny big building not too far from St Anne’s Cathedral where you can do just that.

  • Observer

    Anyone actually in Rostrevor for the festival?

    A cross-community one I might add.

    Rostrevor is home to the three main Christian denominations on the island, and a central part of the festival is what goes on at the Christian renewal centre on the Shore Road.

    It’s there that loyalists, republicans et al are invited to sip tea and make friends. It always goes swimingly.

    I fail to comprehend how PSNI TSGs would have in anyway prevented the yobbo urinating in the street or the attack on the two men in the early hours of the morning.

    As for reports of 30 youths attacking the PSNI, please provide links.

  • miss fitz

    Observer
    The report of the youths attacking police is mine. I was given that information directly by the PSNI. I am not aware of any one picking up on it, but that might change. As to the presence of police stopping the attacks or the on-going public disorder, we will never know will we?

    For too long areas such as this were a no-go area for police. My fear is that we are now paying the price for abrogating legitimate law and order.

    As to the Music of Healing event, it is still an outstanding occasion, as are all of the other properly held festival events.

    The difficulty Rostrevor is facing is much the same as faced Ballyshannon and other festivals who were challenged by this kind of dunken and crazed behaviour.

  • Observer

    Rostrevor — a ‘no go area’ for the PSNI?

    A place where the people are ‘abrogating legitimate law and order’.

    Really?

    This is the first I’ve heard of it.

    Rostrevor, for the most part, is a fairly sleepy place. The local youths — like in every other small village in the country — enjoy a jar and cause their fair share of annoyance.

    The attack on the two men was outrageous, but a extremely rare event all the same.

    In my experience, most people there have no problem in picking up the phone and calling the PSNI when it’s warranted.

    To portray this predominantly middle-class, middle-of-the-road hamlet as some sort of republican outpost verges on the ridiculous.

  • Miss Fitz

    Observer
    I am not sure if you are just playing Devils Advocate here.

    I am sure your comments about Rostrevor are a great comfort to the families of the 2 RUC men mudrered in the village in 1983. http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/othelem/chron/ch83.htm

    And those nice flags that fly in the village around Easter are just for decoration?

    Rostrevor is home to some of the wealthiest people in Northern Ireland, and certainly has an abundance of middle class well heeled people. But it is also a strong Republican area, and it is nonsense to say otherwise.

    While there is much more acceptance of the PSNI here now, they would not have come out here 15 years ago without extreme measures of support being taken.

  • Observer

    Deeply misleading.

    So, the shooting dead of two RUC men in 1983 — allegedly by IRA members from south Armagh — somehow means Rostrevor was the cockpit of the struggle against British imperialism?

    Not likely.

    I’d be interested in other statistics proving Rostrevor’s nasty, subversive streak.

    As for the ‘nice flags’ you refer to at Easter time — yes most of the people who live there regard themselves as Irish (however unappealing that might be to you) and this is reflected in a smattering of flags throughout the village during that time of year.

    Celebrations are held on one day a year — not drawn out for months on end.

    The notion that Rostrevor is somehow staunchly republican and therefore, according to your prejudice — lawless — is highly misleading.

    If anything, Rostrevor is a model of good relations where crime is remarkably low.

    If only that could be said for other small towns and hamlets further up the south Down coast.

  • overhere

    I have to say Miss Fizz that the issue of the trouble in Rostrevor would have stood on its own without any mention of other problems with the OO.

    Here in England we have the same trouble every weekend on the streets of all the cities as I am sure you do in Belfast and all other towns and we do not need to make references to the Poll Tax riots or Toxteth riots.

    The issue is basically about the abuse of alcohol and youth with perhaps too much disposable income.

  • Miss Fitz

    Overhere
    I have made the point that this is a wider societal issue. However, it did strike me the other evening that we spend a lot of time making comment and indeed censuring unionist celebrations of culture for street drinking. It is a very contentious issue, and raised its head most prominently this year.

    My question is: why should it be different in nationalist areas? Is it because we are not offending ‘the other side’? If that is the case, do we then accept it is OK to offend members of the community of our own persuasion?

    You see I dont accept that. I believe that there should be one law, equally applied to all without exception. If its OK to drink on the streets at a nationalsit outing, no matter where it takes place, it should be okay to drink on the streets at bonfires and parades.

    While the issue of the trouble would indeed have stood on its own, I was making a much wider and more political point.

    Observer:

    I have been trying to think of way to answer your question in a fair and objective manner. Can you name the councillors in Rostrevor, and tell me the last time there was an Alliance or SDLP councillor here? Answer is, we have an SF councillor and an Independent.

    I am really unsure what you mean by ‘nasty subversive’ streaks. Is that an implication that republicanism is nasty and subversive? Oh dear.

  • barnshee

    “For too long areas such as this were a no-go area for police. My fear is that we are now paying the price for abrogating legitimate law and order.”

    So pay the price– no sensible policeman is going to get him/herself hurt in these situations.

    In a similar incident on the north coast when I remonstrated with a policeman for similar inaction the response was simple.
    “I am not going to get hurt for anyone particularly a bunch of drunks”

  • Observer

    Miss Fitz,

    Mick Murphy and Anthony Williamson — the two councillors you refer to are representative of the village.

    Surely, Sinn Fein would have 2 councillors in the village were it a republican stronghold? Mr Williamson has never had any truck with the republican movement.

    The lack of a SDLP councillor has as much to do with the shambles the local party is in as much as anything else.

    My reference to a ‘nasty subversive streak’ was intended to be sarcastic. You seem to be suggesting that republicans or nationalists are inherently lawless.

    Crotlieve — the electoral ward that takes in Rostrevor and the surrounding area has 3 SDLP councillors, by the way.

    You have cackhandedly tried to portray a civilised little village — that happens to be *gulp* nationalist — as some sort of bandit country.

    I’m afraid your political prejudices are leading you down a cul de sac here.

  • Animus

    What a bunch of pontificators. Miss Fitz – I think your point stands. If there is likely to be disorder and public drunkenness, the police should be present. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, so it’s quite fair to mention unionist festivals as well.

    As for the point about street drinking being banned, unfortunately, the attitude by many to drinking here makes it necessary. Yes, it’s idiotic. Have a look at Botanic after a sunny day and it’s littered with carrier bags and empty tins. Lovely.

  • Sean

    Miss Fitz
    As usual your rose coloured glasses for the unionist community have couloured your vision

    For years your lot has been banging away about only the police should be the police so the IRA after accomplishing much of its agenda has retired to their cups and left policing to the police. Now it turns out that they are unable or unwilling to do the actual policing so you want to blame the failure of the PSNI on the IRA? How very ummm DUP of you

  • snakebrain

    I’ve looked at this thread a few times now, trying to figure out what I make of it. I’ve come to the conclusion that, while nobody pretends the consequences of problem drinking are pleasant, the need to link this to calls to cut down on OO drinking is tenuous at best, and sectarian at worst.

    What I think MF is indulging in here is a little touch of righteous condemnation of some unpleasant behaviour, with a little political twist attached.

    It’s a simple enough device. If you disagree with my condemnation of problem drinkers in Rostrevor, you are obviously wrong. Then, since I’ve linked this to opposition to OO and Twelth day drinking, if you don’t take the same strident tone of condemnation and adopt all the same conclusions as me, you are obviously biased against the OO.

    Totally ignoring the difference in context and situation.

    When Twelth day celebrations are criticised for large-scale drunkenness, we are talking about thousands, if not tens of thousands of individuals simultaeneously indulging in a massive orgy of WKD-fuelled drunkenness, with associated massive clean-up costs and unpleasantness for all those who don’t feel they can safely venture out their doors for several days.

    Here we have Rostrevor, population perhaps 2500 (I’m guessing), with a mob of thirty (perhaps) drunken thugs indulging themselves. Maybe there is an issue with why policing isn’t as effective as it should be. In my experience, policing in rural areas tends to be cack anyway.

    Of course this event should have been policed. Of course drunken violence should not be tolerated. But it’s not the same thing as criticising the failure of social leaders to take action against public drunkenness on a massive scale. To pretend it is invites the accusation of whataboutery and veiled sectarianism that I feel obliged to make.

    I’m sure I’ll be accused of the same things now, but, to paraphrase a certain Southern gentleman, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

  • overhere

    Again Miss Fizz was the event in Rostrevor a Republican/Nationalist event or was it simply a festival with no political overtones. If you are saying because it was in Rostrevor it must be a Nationalist/Republican event then you would have to conclude that hypothetically a Bonny Baby contest in the Shankill was a loyalist/Unionist only event or that the Nottinghill Carnival was caribean(excuse spelling)/Coloured only event.

    If anything this is tribalism at its worse

    Again the problem is to do with alcohol and the “chav element” we have in all societies not sure what the Irish version of “chav” would be though.

  • snakebrain

    spides and millies seem to be the preferred terms around belfast overhere…

  • exile

    Overhere,
    She said (or even implied) nothing of the kind.
    Read the post again. The point is about wider lawlessness, not an claim that this was “nationalist” disorder. The difference between this sort of behaviour in northern ireland and, for instance, London, is that there is nowhere in london that is beyond the reach of the police, at any time. Sometimes they take a more hands off attitude, but that is a decision made, rather than forced upon them.

  • exile

    though, of course, the police need to have the desire to bring even-handed order to the whole place. bad show from them.

  • overhere

    Then why was the OO mentioned at all

  • Dread Cthulhu

    snakebrain: “It’s a simple enough device. If you disagree with my condemnation of problem drinkers in Rostrevor, you are obviously wrong. Then, since I’ve linked this to opposition to OO and Twelth day drinking, if you don’t take the same strident tone of condemnation and adopt all the same conclusions as me, you are obviously biased against the OO. ”

    God, its amazing how far some folks will go out of their way to be offended, or at least unduly snarky…

    There should be one law and one standard, period, for public behavior, be it the Twelfth, St. Patrick’s Day or a week from next Tuesday, be the culprit orange, green or pink with purple polka-dots.

    Now, as much as I enjoy a verbal go at Miss Fitz as the next poster, this is ludicrous. What is so damned radical about saying that gravy for a goose is gravy for a gander?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    overhere: “Then why was the OO mentioned at all ”

    **looks at the calender**

    Gee, I wonder…

  • snakebrain

    Dread,

    I never said for a second that gravy for one wasn’t good enough for the other. It’s so damn obvious it doesn’t really need saying. I thought the tie to the treatment of Unionist parades was totally unnecessary. Perhaps my distaste for the reading of every situation in NI through us-and-them glasses is at a peak just now.

    If everyone tried to forget about it as much as possible it would be a great help.

    That was the only reason I bothered commenting.

    If Miss Fitz feels so strongly, she should make a complaint to the police or the Ombudsman. What more needs to be said really?

  • overhere

    Maybe because thingds are “sort of back to normal” over there you have found out that you have nothing to talk about unless it is couched in a “them and us” senario.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    snakebrain: “It’s so damn obvious it doesn’t really need saying.”

    And, yet, much of this thread would appear to be the kingdom of the one-eyed. and, if fairness, yous was simply the last in a series of posts.

    snakebrain: “I thought the tie to the treatment of Unionist parades was totally unnecessary. Perhaps my distaste for the reading of every situation in NI through us-and-them glasses is at a peak just now.”

    The Twelfth is less than two weeks behind us. Like it or no, it casts a pretty large shadow as far as yob behavior is concerned, orange, rose or other lenses not withstanding. The fact that the 12th has political yobbery mixed with its ordinary anti-social yobbery is an unfortunate reality.

    snakebrain: “If everyone tried to forget about it as much as possible it would be a great help. ”

    Ignoring a problem does not make it go away. Indeed, ignoring a problem often appears to be de facto permission to repeat the problem in future periods.

    snakebrain: “If Miss Fitz feels so strongly, she should make a complaint to the police or the Ombudsman. What more needs to be said really? ”

    That the police ought to have the cod in their pants to do the job they signed up to do, rather than be barely decorative place-holders for a real police force, whenever that might evolve?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    overhere: “Maybe because thingds are “sort of back to normal” over there you have found out that you have nothing to talk about unless it is couched in a “them and us” senario. ”

    Bollocks.

    As I said to snakebrain, just because the event is over, don’t imagine its done. The Twelfth, like it or no, puts yobbery on parade, pardon, on display. It is not unreasonable to compare the yobbery of less than two weeks ago with more recent yobbery, particularly is there are similar failings by the state, such as inadequate / non-existant policing.

  • snakebrain

    Now who’s being unduly snarky?

  • Observer

    The Fiddlers Green festival in Rostrevor is a non-political cross-community event attended by people of all ages and from all walks of life.

    Miss Fitz’s initial suggestion was that yobbos were allowed to do what they did as Rostervor — being nationalist — was a ‘no go area’ for the PSNI.

    There was no massed numbers of PSNI landrovers in Rostrevor because the idea is ludicrous.

    Can anyone point to any precedent in Rostrevor where the PSNI has been needed during the festival to prevent widespread social disorder?

    Comparisons with the 12th are bizarre.

  • Miss Fitz

    Observer

    You are just wrong about this. I have lived in Rostrevor for most of my adult life, and I love the place dearly. It has been good to me and to my family. I wish the Festival nothing but the best.

    But, I also have a deep and real understanding of the things I am talking about. I’ve told the story before of calling the police to an incident in my restaurant, and being referred to the local Sinn Fein representative, as the police didnt ‘deal’ with those kind of incidents. I’ve had helpicopters flying over my house on Christmas day when the RUC came to pick up a dinner for a client of mine who was doing without. While the RUC were more than willing to help me on that occasion, it took one chopper and 2 police cars to pick up some turkey and ham. Things are changing here, but it is slow progress.

    Unfortunately, there have been violent incidents here in the past. Knee cappings, beatings, bricks through windows, and most with a political message. This is why the Festival has been such an important and integral part of life here. As you rightly said, the Music of Healing did much to promote understanding and open dialogue. But there is an element of people who either descend on the village during the Festival or in some other way get let out to cause mayhem. This is genuinely the worst I have ever seen it, and I dont think it should be allowed to continue unchecked.

    You take all of my statements and exaggerate them, and you are twiting my arguments. I did not think there should be ‘massed’ TSG in the village. When I made my formal statement to the police, I questioned why there had been no presence in the village. It was at that point I was told that indeed there had been , and that the 3 officers came under sustained stone and bottle attack. When I asked why they didnt call for TSG back-up I was informed that this was denied and they were told to stand down. This left the village without such protection.

    They returned to the village for the subsequent 999 calls.

    I suspect you are making your points more to goad me, because you are not well informed on ths subject.

    My wider point, to make it again, is that Northern Irish society has never really known normal policing. What I would have considered standard in the US, was not seen as standard practice here. We have allowed this vaccuum to occur, and we need to promote the idea pretty quickly that the PSNI are here to serve and protect, in all areas without fear or favour.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    snakebrain: “Now who’s being unduly snarky? ”

    Are you suggesting that, in light of events and assoicated comments, that my characterization of the PSNI is somehow unfair or inaccurate?

    observer: “Can anyone point to any precedent in Rostrevor where the PSNI has been needed during the festival to prevent widespread social disorder? ”

    Oh, I wouldn’t expect waves of Land Rovers to deal with 30 yobbos, and, yes, there is an order of mangitude or two’s difference between the events, but the underlying principle — yobbery should not be tolerated — stands the same.

  • overhere

    Dread Are they not yobs for the rest of the year as well or is it just over the 12th. A yob is for life not just for the 12th/Internment Day/ folk festival/bony baby competition/ *delete where applicable

    Also I wasn’t talking about the 12th being over (believe it or not the 12th doesn’t even register over here no matter some in NI would like to believe) I was talking about a devolved government, people talking instead of killing and shouting insults at each other or not talking at all.

    But once again I come back to my main point it appears to me over here in England that no matter what the thread, be it the price of bread, why we have had so much rain this year, who gets invited to a wedding, there has to be some sort of whataboutery/themuns etc ad nauseum

    Can we perhaps just for once start a thread on a subject that matters without decending into the self satisfiying smugness of a schoolyard argument of themuns and whataboutary

  • Dread Cthulhu

    overhere: “Are they not yobs for the rest of the year as well or is it just over the 12th. ”

    Are they equally poorly behaved the whole year, or does the hooplah, hatred and heat of the twelfth bring out their worst?

    Perhaps it is unjust, but many would appear to be at their most visibile during silly season, but that could simply be the time at which the most eyes are watching. Either way, it does not invalidate the issue or the example as a matter of principle.

    overhere: “I was talking about a devolved government, people talking instead of killing and shouting insults at each other or not talking at all. ”

    You confuse the beginning of normalization with things being normal. They are not the same thing.

    overhere: “Can we perhaps just for once start a thread on a subject that matters without decending into the self satisfiying smugness of a schoolyard argument of themuns and whataboutary”

    Been tried on more than a few threads… it is human nature to seek to shift the focus.

    However, whereas Miss Fitz is the blogger on this thread and determines what is to be discussed, it is, pretty much definitionally, not whataboutery. Now, you can complain that she is comparing kuquats to watermelons, but her example seek to demonstrate that yobbery is *not* a “us’uns / them’uns” issue, but a cross-cultural societal issue, albeit one possibly engendered by the break-down of “normal” policing. Until we have police willing to do the work they have signed on to do and are being paid under the apparently incorrect assumption that said is work is being performed, then, I’m sorry to say, “normalcy” will not have been achieved.

  • Rory

    At least unruly youths on the street cannot be blamed on television. The young people who spend all day watching television are much too lazy, or too obese, or both too involve themselves in such exciting activity.

    It is clearly the fault of the government who have been urging young people to get out of the house and expend some energy.

    Those tv addicts choosing to ignore this advice would, in any case, be much too unfit to chuck bottles at the constabulary and given that they would rather piss in their pants than miss a moment of “Big Brother” by leaving the sofa to urinate, it is unlikely that they would brave the outdoor discomfort of waving their todgers at any passing lady.

    All that can be salvaged from these circumstances is if, as suggested above, vicious dogs and, perhaps, rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon are employed by the constabulary. Such deployment into the arena is bound to aid the likiehood that some from among the local youth might emerge as likely contenders in a sprint event at the forthcoming London Olympics.

    Perhaps even a grant may be available for regular “running amok” incidents from the Minister for Sports.

  • exile

    What Dread says is very true.
    I can’t believe these accusations of whataboutery are being thrown about, when the point of the blog was quite the opposite. Miss Fitz tends to be very even handed, and the snideness of the comments on this thread sit very badly when one remembers her personal experience of these events.

  • Animus

    No one mentioned the OO explicitly until a few commenters with tunnel vision expounded on their own little hobby horses. Miss Fitz is clearly showing that excessive drinking is a blight on everyone and the police should be tackling yobbish behaviour wherever it occurs. It makes sense to send officers when a festival is on to ensure that the few don’t ruin it for the many. That’s not whataboutery, that’s what normal policing should be there to do.

    Rory
    What about an Asbo Olympics – which drunken youth can urinate the greatest distance? Competitive drinking? That way the police could stick to doing whatever else and the locals – and the tourists bringing money into the area – could enjoy a festival-like atmosphere and the yobs would be well contained.

  • Observer

    Miss Fitz,

    yes, over 40 years of political and civil unrest, I’m quite aware that some of the incidents you refer to — kneecappings, beatings, took place in Rostrevor.

    There is not a place in the North that hasn’t experienced these type of incidents.

    The difference is that Rostrevor has been a oasis of calm compared with everywhere else. I can only recall two kneecappings in the last 20 years.

    As for the PSNI or the old RUC needing army back-up to enter Rostrevor, I don’t recall any military-style operations when the RUC used to drive their patrol cars through Kilbroney Park at night to smoke out under-age drinkers. Just an observation.

  • overhere

    Maybe as in the Porky movie of many years ago we can get a line up and see if Miss Fizz reconises the Todgy that was being waved about !! Sorry perhaps in bad taste but made me giggle

  • Rory

    “Rory
    What about an Asbo Olympics – which drunken youth can urinate the greatest distance? Competitive drinking?”

    Some of our fellow scribblers on Slugger, Animus, seem to think that such sport is already catered for adequately at the Orangefest.

    Unfortunately, because at that time of year I usually occupy myself with something uplifting like washing out the waste-bins and zapping slugs on the cabbage patch, I have no direct experience to confirm or deny this and so must rely on eye-witness accounts from my fellow (and sister) Sluggerites.