Dromore memorial may have to be demolished…

Despite Sinn Fein’s consistent public line that there is a pressing need for the most stringent equality legislation to protect minorities; it finds one of its own councils in a prolonged stand off with the Equality Commission over the siting of a hunger strike memorial outside the ruins of an old Church of Ireland church on the outskirts of Dromore, Co Tyrone. It only agreed to an equality impact assessement after the intervention of the Secretary of State. Now it looks as if the memorial never had planning permission in the first place and may have to be demolished. The Irish News reports:

Sinn Fein councillor Sean Begley said he felt that many Dromore residents would oppose the removal of the memorial. “Dromore has a very big nationalist and republican area,” he said. “Bobby Sands was an MP for the area and a lot of people would be very supportive of the memorial.”

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  • Elvis parker

    Love the quote from Begley – what a numpity! So he wouldnt object if memorial to loyalists went up in ‘very big’ loyalist and unionist areas.
    Blinded by facism!

  • Bemused

    A beautiful example of the type of vile hypocrisy at which the Shinners excel. How the hell can these clowns even attempt to stand over this memorial? Have they forgotten about their (entirely proper incidentally) opposition to the umpteen illegal orange arches erected across the North by assorted knucle-draggers over the twelfth? You either support an equality agenda or you don’t – sounds like these wankers want to have their rancid cake and eat it…….

  • Bruno Spiro

    There is little doubt that placing this thing in the grounds of this particular church was a calculated insult designed to rub salt into the wounds of the many victims of Bobby’s Boys in the area.

    Hoever let us let it pass, for the sake of the Equality Agenda of course, and to advance that agenda I suggest Clonnard Monastery as an ideal new location for the statue of Roaring Hugh Hanna.

    Who could possibly object?

  • Not a regular

    Mick just a quick correction, the memorial is beside the ruins of the old Catholic Church in Dromore, St. Dympna’s church, and not an old Church of Ireland building as you have stated.

    http://www.dromore.info/

    If you go to the website above, the ruins of St. Dympna’s church, which is where this memorial lies beside, is incorporated into the logo on the top left. The current CoI building is fourth from left in the banner. I don’t recall any old CoI building in the village.

  • ABC

    The Republicans who spend all day posting on Slugger have been very quiet about this issue. They don’t want equality for everyone – they just want to push their own agenda of hate and division.

  • Pete Baker

    Not a regular

    The Equality Commission report – via original press release [2007] – begs to differ [Word Doc].

    The Church, which is now in ruins, was Church of Ireland, and was built in 1694. It was used until approximately 1840, and parishioners were interred there until that time. It consists of a rectangular nave 20m x 7.5m, with a 7m square transept projecting from the middle of the south wall. A number of architectural details survive, including several windows.

    That report also adds

    The memorial was erected sometime before 2001, by persons unknown but assumed by the Council to be the Dromore Memorial Committee, on the basis of information provided to it by a Councillor Begley, who acted as an unofficial go-between between the parties.

  • Pete Baker

    And, also from the report, some background to the complaint

    The Commission received a complaint about this matter from a Dromore resident on 30th January 2006. The Complainant had been in contact with Omagh District Council since 2004, complaining that several years earlier (April 2001) Sinn Féin Council members had organised and attended a march through the village culminating in the dedication of the monument to a deceased IRA member, the erection of a Flag pole with an Irish Tricolour flag, and the planting of a tree for IRA members who died during the hunger strike, all on Council property. The Complainant alleged that the political nature of such emblems meant that this site, which has historical significance for all the residents of the village, was being “hijacked by one section of the community in a very provocative manner”. To emphasise his view that the site had been politicised, the complainant referred to the fact that on the date of his correspondence the Irish flag had been lowered to half mast to coincide with the funeral of an IRA member and that there had been a paramilitary procession to the monument on the previous day.

  • No one will be taking down this monument. No one.

  • cynic

    “No one will be taking down this monument. No one.”

    Want to bet? Then perhaps we will see the Councillors hauled into court and disqualified from office for breaching anti-discrimination law? After all when you sign up to the sate and law you expect it to be enforced.

    By the way is this a general memorial to the Hunger Strikers or just a memorial to some specific murders, bombers and child killers?

  • borderline

    Ooooh well, the Northern Ireland (still part of the UK) authorities have ruled on this and the Council and the Equality Authority and…

    GTF