Flag wars in Kilrea

I was brought up quite near Kilrea which contrary to some people’s views is not actually noted for particularly good community relations. The latest problem has been the “tit for tat” flying of flags. Apparently this episode began when the Irish tricolour was raised over the St Patrick’s Church of Ireland church on Easter Sunday. As some form of “retaliation” the Union flag was then raised over the Marion Hall in the town.

This unpleasant silliness has been condemned by both Olive Church the local UUP councillor who is a member of St. Patrick’s CoI and John Dallat the SDLP MLA. I am slightly disappointed to see, however, that Dallat described the misuse of the Union flag as a sectarian desecration (which I entirely agree with) but seemed not to use the term sectarian when describing flying the tricolour over St. Patrick’s. Overall I thought his condemnation of the attack on the CoI was less fulsome than that on the Marion Hall. Maybe I am being too sensitive.