Who owns the roads in Ballymena?

We often hear from supporters of the  loyalist Marching Orders that those opposed to parades don’t ‘own the road.’

A 58-year old woman was assaulted during a Black Institution parade in Ballymena at the weekend. Her ‘crime’ was to cross the road during a gap in the parade, which allegedly prompted marchers to assault her. During the assault, the 5ft 1 lady was punched in the face and neck and had her fingers dislocated.

No doubt those responsible will be swiftly brought to justice as there could hardly have been a shortage of witnesses- not least from the Loyal brethren on parade….

  • ulstergeordie

    Alan, you and i are polar opposites in terms of Northern Ireland, but i can empathise (to a point) in what you are saying in this post. Without wanting to sound patronising, its a point very well mate, but i am still smarting at your description of “occupied six counties” and the Royal Family, but that aisde, good post!!!

  • Dan

    There’s a massive difference between 1 parade every year and hundreds of different parades on 8 (plus) different days.

  • Dan

    Just a quick pointer: Britain = England, Wales, and, for another year or 2, Scotland.

  • ulstergeordie

    Dan, thanks for pointing than that, i was being lazy, what i should have said was…The UK government…etc etc

  • ulstergeordie

    Yes, 12 years ago, in the past, over a decade ago. You cannot accept that many average nationalists accept the Loyal Orders walking the streets and enjoy watching parades. I know this because i know of such people, people who happen to be friends of mine, who are Roman Catholics and enjoy watching the parades. You just don’t get it do you!?

    Not all people are as narrow minded as you USA. Yes the USA is an easy target, lets face facts throughout history they have not made it easy on themselves! Guantanamo Bay anyone???

    You are now reverting to insults by calling my people “cowards”, think that says more about you and also the fact that you are losing this arguement.

  • USA

    Dan….indeed.
    Ulster Geordie is also lazy with his “dumb Yank” routine. Bar room bullshit at best, not worth rigorous analysis. He finds it easier to fall back on stereotypes than address uncomfortable realities. It’s just his narrow little comfort zone, which his narrow little brain can handle. These types are followers, and easily led. He does not have the courage to step out and engage in any meaningful manner.
    Intellectual coward.

  • USA

    Ulster Geordie,
    You are a laugh a minute. I can certainly disagree with US foreign policy going back decades, but given your horrific history of colonialism and genocide you really are in no position to cast aspersions.

  • USA

    Rasharkin moron….Rasharkin.

  • USA

    Ulster Geordie,
    The phrase you are stumbling over is “point very well made”, not “point very well mate”. Also, the correct spelling of “aisde” (sic) is “aside”.
    Masters degree my arse….primary school drop out more like!
    I know it’s hard for you but try not to make a fool of yourself in public.

  • ulstergeordie

    USA, i have clearly hit a raw nerve. This whole debate has been far too easy, you are the one resorting to insults, sign of three things; a. someone losing the arguement b. someone who is being intellectually challenged. c. someone with a major inferiority complex. Questioning someones intellect over a couple of typos is very brave of you. But like i said you are easy pickings.

    You just stick to insulting me 4000 miles away, thats your level, not very brave, simply cowardly. You have brought nothing to this debate, wheras i have given counter arguements againt your bigoted bile. Like i said, just carry on with your cowardly jibes 4000 miles away, takes a brave person to insult someone behind the mask of a PC/Mac etc but then again from what i have read from you over the last couple of days, should be surprising.

    Never once have i ever said the words “dumb yank”, in fact if you had the brains to go back and read one of my previous posts, you will see that actually went out of my way NOT to stereotype you from the majority of decent and intelligent US citizens.

    You just carry on being offended 4000 miles living away from a culture and tradition that you nothing about.

  • Prionsa Eoghann

    Ulster Makam

    You have used the phrase “what about” on at least two occassions above. I am sure that getting anywhere near a Masters would require a certain degree of introspective reasoning. Alas the ony evidence of it is replying to the charges that USA makes to voice the lie about higher lodges or some such nonsense.

    That veiled nonsense has been long debunked as the OO, black or whatever supremacist bigoted band of brothers go march in many parts of the six counties with loyalist bands who display death squad banners and likenesses of dead members of said deathsquads who excelled in the murder of Catholics.

    ^^What was it Richard Nixon said after Bloody Sunday? Yes, nothing to do with us. Pity all those “Plastic Paddies” who backed the PIRA did not do the same.^^

    I am intruiged by this comment. Are you saying that the omerta and fake investigating aggregated with false reporting post murders was in some way correct by the British. And Irish-America should have joined their government in the collusion of silence?

    Oh and I am from scotland should you require the wiggle room to attack my global positioning etc.

  • Blair

    USA,

    I agree that drunken behaviour at public events is to be deplored, and that the full weight of the law should be thrown at people who do such things.

    Do you have any thoughts on people illegaly blocking roads, setting up hoax bombs in order to disrupt legal assemblies, attacking the police, rioting, attacking legal assemblies, attacking halls and places of worship, attacking people’s homes in an effort to force them out and further reduce the presence of a minority in a village etc?

    Or do you restrict your horror to the behaviour of a few drunks at a parade?

  • Blair

    Alan,

    Do you have a specific formula for working out how they should celebrate in proportion to their numbers? One band per ten Protestants say?

  • latcheeco

    ulstergeordie,
    Your claim that many average nationalists (does that make the rest of us above or below average?) enjoy watching loyal order parades, replete of course with kick the pope bands, is just a crude extension of the old “great wee place if it wasn’t for those fenian troublemakers” self-justifying nonsense. No doubt there are myriads of nationalists upon whom you base your claim; however, the problem is that none of the rest of us ever seem to have met one . Truth be told, those catholics living in tiny vulnerable enclaves in places like Ballymena who are forced to put up with your nonsense just to get by, probably resent everything your parades stand for even more than the rest of us

  • Blair

    latcheecoo,

    And how should their hatred be rewarded?

  • Alan Maskey

    Blair
    It is a tricky problem from a non partisan pov as there are no real comparitors. No one else seems to have this marching/band culture. We could try sporting events in Dublin (GAA, IRFU and the other c–ts) or St Patick’s Day parades, big, small and tiny in the South.
    Obviously some villages would rightly feel very attached to their own parade in Gortahork or Glenamaddy and would not countenance going to Letterkenny or Galway City for a bigger gig.
    The GAA, IRFU and the other c–ts have leeching neighbours protesting if they try to have any new gigs so that too is not a proper comparitor.
    Besides their full calendars, the main problem in Dublin sport has been with soccer and with playing teams like Rangers in particular. The plus side with playing Rangers or their like is if there is trouble, some of it falls on Bohs or whoever is the host team. There seems no such impediment to the Orange Order. It is march and be damned.
    There are several ways quotas could be aimed for. Some major Orange gigs should be untouchable. But others should probably be amalgamated or moved. I guess a start would be for the PSNI to break the Orange parades up into a set number of Premier and Vauxhall League marches and to use carrot and stick financing to get some kind of order on it.
    Another thing I guess has changed is the Orange brethern are much more mobile than their forebears were in the 1920s and 1930s so having a bigger bash in a smaller number of locations would seem to make sense.
    What is really different about this and wht is not too far away from the Orange Order’s thinking is monetising it (it also sanitises it in ways). The Paddy’s day parades used to be sober child centred affairs but now they are the preserve of the profssional yobbos who specialise in hijacking funding for such events.
    Older Orangemen would be horrified at all this but the future is in taking the high and lucrative grounds. This is incompatible with marching past Ardoyne shops or the pinprick of Rasharkin.
    The future is in marching where tourists can see you and a bit of Troubles and Titanic glory too.
    Maybe Englush football makes a good example. Much mor sanitised, much more expensive and much more popular.

    You will notice I don’t mention the Green. Not relevant here I think. But they will be very much if the Orange Order continues as before. Times change.
    The Tony Blair gig in Dublin might furthr help. A guy like Blair is allowed some leeway to block up Dublin like he is Wilie Fraser or someone important. But Eason’s should be allowed to do only so many of these a year and absolutely no more, no way, no how, unless they cough up serious $$..

  • Blair

    Alan,

    Some interesting thoughts. Might it though be possible for nationalists to suspend their hatred and propensity to try and kill or seriously injure people during parades for the short time that it takes them to occur? Or would that be asking too much?

  • latcheeco

    Blair,
    Thanks for the reply. I think I understand what you are saying. You feel that restrictions are being put on your culture because other people find it, or claim to find it, offensive and intimidating and are in turn trying to intimidate you into stopping something you feel is intrinsic to the fabric of your community and has been for a long time and which, from your perspective, is harmless if left alone and not designed to cause offense. You feel that if nationalists are really genuine about peace, then parades are something they are going to have to accept.
    I don’t know the answer, but I do know that to suggest, as ulstergeordie seems to, that nationalists actually like watching the loyal orders is silly. If I accept that you are genuine, then you should also accept that I am genuine when I say that nationalists feel that they are triumphalist and intimidating. If you accept that, and you are genuine about living in a place where your kids don’t have to be afraid of their neighbour, then the next question has to be, to misquote Mr. McDonald of South Belfast ” Why would you want to?” To answer your question sincerely and without trying to be patronising or offensive, I have always felt that tribal marching in a place where two tribes, that are very hurt and bitter at each other, need to coexist for the state to function, is sheer unadulterated madness and objectively it is an obvious achilles heel and embarrassment for unionism that has little or nothing to do with either Britishness or ensuring the longevity of Northen Ireland and has brought the unionist cause more harm than good. Strategically for unionism, parades are the gift that keeps on giving, except they are a gift to nationalism.

  • Blair

    latcheecoo,

    Thank you for your reasoned reply. Do you think that if unionists curtailed their culture to the extent that they only displayed it in areas in which they were the majority, and where random republicans did not step into their path to be offended, that republicans would stop attempting to denigrate and destroy such culture?

  • Dan

    “attempting to denigrate and destroy such culture”

    Put this land’s native language back on the road signs, then we’ll start to talk about destroying culture.

  • latcheeco

    Blair,
    As I said before, I don’t know the answer but unionism’s chronic addiction to tooting its flute is not healthy, nor has it been very successful. Again, I’m trying not to be offensive but tribal marches would seem contrary to unionists’ long term goals. A start to a solution might be at least an admission that there is/has been in the past an ugly sectarian side to that culture and then producing a sincere framework for addressing it. And that admission does not mean surrender, it means maturity. If you know a parade route is going to be like a red rag to a bull to hundreds of hopeless kids with nothing to lose who are going to associate you with riot helmets, batons, and water cannon, give it a by ball (even if it does seem unfair) because you’ll win the battle and lose the war otherwise.
    I get a sense from your question that you feel that unionists are being blackmailed and the demands will never stop. You feel that if you can’t march in peace in Ballymena what chance have you? That is the wrong approach and is based on the false premise that your enemy today cannot be your friend tomorrow. Have the confidence to ask yourself if any of the criticisms are true and if so is there a way to address them and render them invalid. When you offer your hand people tend to reciprocate, especially when everybody is losing. One would imagine the marching Orders’ goal should be to get to a state in the future where parades are an accepted non-controversial non-contentious part of the fabric whether NI remains in the UK or rejoins the rest of Ireland. If that is not their goal it would be better for everybody if they just wrapped it up.

  • Ulster Geordie

    latcheecoo,

    This is a difficult one to reply to. I can give you examples of Roman Catholics, who used to travel to parades on lodge buses in County Down (i cannot divulge the exact place for obvious reasons), but when lets face “local Republican community enforcers” found out about they were threatened. Okay, this was a few years ago, but i hope you can see the point i am making? You cannot accept that today some nationalists are not offended by the loyal orders and some watch the parades. I would love to give you names but not wise even in this day and age of “peace and reconciliation.

    You talk about “tiny vulnerable enclaves in Ballymena”, last time i looked it was quite a sizeable enclave. The next census will show this i am sure. But you have hit upon a point which needs to be considered, once upon a time Ballymena was a predominantly Protestant town, but demographic changes have meant that the split (for want of a better word) has changed considerably. But in Ballymena, the loyal orders have remained, as has the desite for their followers to support them, meaning there are going to be people who have moved to the area and they may not share this and will in fact be opposed to them. Now we have the potential for conflict, but my point is, the LO’s have every right to walk through the centre of Ballymena as those have to peacefully demonstrate. Speaking of which, there were no protestors at the RBP parade 10 days ago in Ballymena.

  • Neil

    For the record I spent the first 15 years of my life in Ballymena, couldn’t wait to get out of the place and have lived happily in West Belfast for some years now. As a younger lad I had the breaking the ranks thing explained to me in detail. You cross between parades, you take your life in your hands.

    Ballymena’s sufficiently small that most people can be identified, religiously speaking, very easily. William Street is a well known flash point, with some Catholic homes remaining and most Catholic frequented bars on that one small street. Incidentally the Orders changed their traditional route over to William Street from Market Street when the majority of (Catholic owned) homes were demolished to build the dual carriageway. Seems the traditional route had ceased to annoy the Catholic population so it had to be moved to the street with 6 Catholic bars on it.

    But it’s all very typical as far as I can tell. All parades I’ve encountered in Ballymena have been a mixture of intimidation, public urination/drunkenness and random violence.

  • Dan

    Will you stop saying catholic. It’s Nationalist, or Republican. Catholic has nothing to do with it.

  • Neil

    Well now to be fair that’s not true. The people who lived in the houses and drink in the bars are in the main Catholic. Many of them may be Republican or Nationalist, many of them may have no political views at all. But the green element I’m talking about share one thing – their religions, and subsequently their schools and housing. Catholic see.

  • anne warren

    Various reasonable options have been proposed.
    Several could feasibly be explored.
    Would posters who refuse to contemplate alternatives care to explain why they are so blinkered?

  • Skintown Lad

    I wish the Orange Order would wise up and stop making unionists look like complete dickheads.

    Start by:

    1. throwing out any member who has a terrorist conviction.
    2. banning any lodge that carries banners glorifying paramilitaries
    3. refusing to march behind bands that have a history of causing trouble
    4. banning that twat from Ormeau who held five fingers up outside Sean Graham’s
    5. talking to every tom, dick and harry who wants to talk to them
    6. go to Fermanagh and Rosnowlagh and see how civilised orangemen do it

    I don’t think that’s actually asking much. And it’s so bleeding obvious I would like some of the orange supporters on here to explain why it has not been done already. Anyone?

  • JR

    Ah Come on now blare, Do you honestly think if eirigi decided they were going to have a march with 10,000 supporters through a small loyalst village with rebel music in toe they would be welcomed with acceptance and tolerance. A “we don’t own the road so they can demonstrate where they like attitude”.

    Do you actually think this would be such a big demonstration if it wasn’t in a Nationalist village? Can you name another march of similar size in a loyalist village?

    It is one of those situations where two cars meet on a narrow bridge. Someone has to reverse. I think as sugested before, a small parade by local orange men would be the the reasonable compomise.

    Your point about the “formula for parade size” is valid however I think a common sense approach by the locals on both sides should prevail. what size of parade usually takes place in a village of 200 prodestants?

  • Big Maggie

    Testing…

  • Big Maggie

    Ah, finally! Now let’s try this for the sixth time….

    Looks as though the Ballymena poison has seeped through to outlying regions. Some courageous lads placed a pipe bomb in a Catholic primary school this morning and another had to be closed.

    Targeting little children now. Have the Taliban come to County Antrim?

    Neil,

    “Incidentally the Orders changed their traditional route over to William Street from Market Street when the majority of (Catholic owned) homes were demolished to build the dual carriageway. Seems the traditional route had ceased to annoy the Catholic population so it had to be moved to the street with 6 Catholic bars on it.”

    There’s likely a very good (read casuistic) reason behind the rerouting. No doubt somebody on Slugger can enlighten us.

  • Big Maggie

    Hmm, now I understand why I couldn’t post before. My comment included a link to BBC NI.

    What’s going on here? Is there an automatic block of BBC links, and why?

  • latcheeco

    ulstergeordie,
    Thanks for the reply.You obviously are sincere and know more about loyal order parades than I do so I’ll take your word for it that where you are from there are catholics who at least don’t mind parades. Now, by way of reciprocity can you take my word for it that there is a nasty, thuggish sectarian side to loyal parades that the majority of those taking part need to stop ignoring or convincing themselves that it doesn’t really exist and is just the other side trying to start trouble?.

  • Neil

    Maybe, or maybe (this being the mid eighties) the Orders were doing their best to antagonise. They do that sometimes you know..?

  • Big Maggie

    No, I’m sure there was a jolly fine reason behind it: the position of the street in relation to the summer solstice, the quality of the roadway paving, the discovery that William Street was built on an ancient leyline, all sorts of excellent reasons.

    No doubt one of the Brethren will enlighten us ere long.

    Chris,

    What’s with the links to the BBC? I included one in my first version of this comment and couldn’t post. Now I can. Yet I see that YOU link to the Beeb. Very mysterious….

  • Impartial Observer

    “Well now to be fair that’s not true.”

    Your quote below is actually applicable to most of your post to the extent that I am sceptical about whether you ever lived here!

    It is completely ridiculous to say that in a town of 30,000 people everyone knows everyone else’s religion and if this was a comment on the alleged assalut at the parade it assumes that the preceptory involved was from Ballymena and not somewhere else in County Antrim. I understand that it was not a local preceptory but perhaps County Antrim is also sufficiently small that most people can be identified, religiously speaking, very easily. Or perhaps you talk rubbish….

    As for the majority of catholic owned homes in Market Road (not street) being demolished to build the dual carriageway (Parkway) this is even less true as only one vacant property (vested years ago) was flattened. The rest of the houses in a residential street are all still there and if the parade was moved (I’m not even sure that this was the case) the move away from the chapel to a commercial street in the town centre where the pubs (which used to have mixed clientele until the sectarian attacks of a number of years ago) are not open was hardly an attempt to offend more people. This parade did not even ebter William Street or Market Street or Road for that matter!

    It just shows you that even when the parades move away from catholic residential areas to town centres even then their motives are questioned (based in this case on a tissue of lies)

  • Impartial Observer

    Repeat of the post above seeing the lies are being repeated in this part of the thread…

    “Well now to be fair that’s not true.”

    Your quote below is actually applicable to most of your post to the extent that I am sceptical about whether you ever lived here!

    It is completely ridiculous to say that in a town of 30,000 people everyone knows everyone else’s religion and if this was a comment on the alleged assalut at the parade it assumes that the preceptory involved was from Ballymena and not somewhere else in County Antrim. I understand that it was not a local preceptory but perhaps County Antrim is also sufficiently small that most people can be identified, religiously speaking, very easily. Or perhaps you talk rubbish….

    As for the majority of catholic owned homes in Market Road (not street) being demolished to build the dual carriageway (Parkway) this is even less true as only one vacant property (vested years ago) was flattened. The rest of the houses in a residential street are all still there and if the parade was moved (I’m not even sure that this was the case) the move away from the chapel to a commercial street in the town centre where the pubs (which used to have mixed clientele until the sectarian attacks of a number of years ago) are not open was hardly an attempt to offend more people. This parade did not even ebter William Street or Market Street or Road for that matter!

    It just shows you that even when the parades move away from catholic residential areas to town centres even then their motives are questioned (based in this case on a tissue of lies)

  • USA

    Blair,
    Of course I think it is wrong to attack peoples homes, places of worship, the police, local halls etc.

  • USA

    ulstergeordie,

    Just thought it was funny when you boasted about your alleged Masters degree, then turned out to be barely literate.
    Funny guy 🙂

  • Alan Maskey

    Skintown Lad

    I liked your comment on the legitimacy of PIRA beofre it was removed. Very funny and very true.
    That is a good comment you make on throwing those linked to paramilitaries out of the OO. Who is going to do the throwing? And are they any good at boxing? Or would they liked to be boxed? Permanently.

  • Drumlin Rock

    1. anyone with a criminal conviction of any sort should be expelled according to the rules.
    2. such banners are banned (with the exception of references to the 1912 UVF)
    3. that is the case, or should be according to the rules again.
    4. I am pretty sure he was expelled, was quite a while ago now.
    5. can we draw the line at Scientologists?
    6. dont forget Tyrone!

    The big problem with the rules of the Order is they are enforced at local level, or not enforced as may be the case, and they set the standards that high that not one member would be left if they were be fully enforced.

  • billy

    yes absolutely correct the royal black would be mainly composed of police officers , prison officers , bussiness men and Masons… not your average knuckledraggers i ‘m sure you would agree . sorry for letting the cat out of the bag brother!!!.

  • billy

    Neil. ALL i can say i bet All saints chapel I’m sure were glad they didnt have to listen to sash being played outside the doors as what hapened at every parade in the mid eighties before the route was changed , Ballymena hasnt changed a bit , still sectarian in nature . Prods in Harryville and Taigs at the top of the town ( william street) . I too left ballymena to grow up . Its a pity prodestants were driven out of fisherwick and catholics driven out of harryville and we wouldnt be having this conversation. By that i mean the town would be equally divided. A town for all. some people are so sad.

  • Ulster Geordie

    Prionsa Eoghann,

    That was a third rate attempt at an insult, it is spelt MACKEM. Also, are you trying to insult me by calling me a MACKEM? (there you go again, another lesson on how to spell), well i may support Newcastle United but i know many good people from Wearside and this attempt at an insult is based on a generalisation, you are assuming that by calling a NUFC fan a MACKEM (blimey i am spoiling you!) you are insulting them, oh tut tut!!!

    As for pointing out what you perceive to be “what abouts”, is that the best you can come up with? But then trying to ridicule my Masters degree and doubting my education by referring to “what abouts” (there it is twice again for you) is pathetic, especially when you are judging someone you have never met and their level education, based on a internet blog! Now who is the silly billy!? No competition.

  • billy

    all saints boxers were fairly good at it , they hammered a few sammys in their day and still can if given the chance

  • Prionsa Eoghann

    Ulster

    ^^..are you trying to insult me by calling me a MACKEM?^^

    Not at all…………..it is the Makem’s that might be insulted. No my intention was to make you bite………..

    ^^As for pointing out what you perceive to be “what abouts”, is that the best you can come up with?^^

    No perception ma man they were 100% bona fide “whatabouts” in the classic sense. Where instead of indulging in a wee bit of introspectivity regarding the behaviour of yir bigotted pals you instead ignore this and try and shine a light elswhere………..not particularly successful if I may point out.

    Also you have taken up most of your reply to me to correct an offhand spelling mistake whilst ignoring my points regarding your lie about higher lodges dealing with lodges that march with UVF/UFF etc type bands and banners, and of course my request for elaboration regarding your inbsidious comment about bloody sunday. To ignore these substantial points and concentrate on nonsense is bad enough but when you go on the attack using the nonsense to ask ” is that the best you can come up with?” Well that is not just cheeky but utter stupidity!

    I look forward to you addressing the substance and not the frivolities, sure we can all do that.

  • Ulster Geordie

    Prionsa Eoghann

    Due to time constraints i will need to keep this reply brief, but the flying of such flags is BANNED, any reference you will see to the UVF will be to the 1912 one.

    You refer to “yir bigotted pals”, may i suggest that you keep these childish insults to yourself, but it seems to be part and parcel of your patter, sign of being bullied at school perhaps? But the choice of language shows you to be the bigot and not i. Intollerant of a culture you know nothing about, imagine not even knowing that such flags are banned!

  • Prionsa Eoghann

    The last link is interesting, on further perusal the law on paramilitary banners and uniforms is applied strictly in Scotland. Seems that the Scottish OO banned this band but the apprentice boys still give them sustanance.

    The Scottish OO are also having a mature protest against the Pope. Yep they are going to hold a dignified silence along the route, unlike the upsurge in ‘ef the pope’ nutters that have been passing my back gate lately. Seems the imminent papal visit is causing the more atavistic elements to come oot their caves.

  • Alan Maskey

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11223457

    Here is an interesting comparitor. Next Saturday is burn a Koran day. In shades of South Park, there are objections to this.

    If you go to the Everyone darw Mohammada day page, those guys are against it but they insult the Prophet in ways Muslims do not like.
    The Florida whackos have got international publicity for their gig. Here we have competing rights, much like Ballymena but with one big exception: Muslims tend to hit back.

  • Neil

    I didn’t say that every one of the 30k people could identify every other one, but I know from my own experience I and my own friends were identified a number of times. There are of course more prominent families in town than others, (one branch of the McKeowns in Ballymena is well known), but I can say with confidence that if ten people were witnesses to the assault, one of the ten would know or know the person involved.

    I was identified as a Catholic myself a couple of times and got a slap for my trouble and on a couple of occassions ran like the hammers of fuck and made it out of there with my skin intact. If you wish to accuse me of lying fill your boots, it makes little odds, but I did grown up in Ballymena and thes experiences did happen. When I was chased down, I wasn’t wearing a Celtic top, nor do I have Catholic tattooed on my forehead. Somehow they figured it out, though it’s not too tricky when most of the kids in town pass through wearing a school uniform during the day.

    The rest of the houses in a residential street are all still there and if the parade was moved (I’m not even sure that this was the case) the move away from the chapel to a commercial street in the town centre where the pubs (which used to have mixed clientele until the sectarian attacks of a number of years ago) are not open was hardly an attempt to offend more people.

    The move away from the chapel you say? Any parades that I’ve come across which pass through William Street have turned right at the bottom and marched past the front doors of the chapel. Maybe not this specific parade, I don’t know if it went down the Broughshane Road or not, but the majority do. So the suggestion that they moved away from the chapel in some kiond of good willed magnanimous gesture is utter shite. No matter which road they follow (Market Road or William Street) they still pass the chapel at exactly the same spot. Sounds like a bit of rubbish you’re talking yourself, though I’ll stop short of accusing you of lying.

    Incidentally the pubs not being open is also bullshit, as there have been plenty of parades past them on a Saturday evening (as the mini twelfth is held annually on a Saturday) at the height of trade between 7 and about 11 pm. Another bit of rubbish there, though again I’ll not accuse you of intentionally lying or spinning the facts.

    I’ll take your point on how many houses got knocked down, I simply can’t remember it was a long time ago and I was fairly young at the time, but as I remember there were houses on Market Road (again thanks for the correction I’m working from a memory from a good while ago, or maybe I’m lying and inserting intentional mistakes to mask the fact I never lived in Ballymena lol)on both sides to the bottom (Doury Road) end of the street. As far as I know that’s no longer the case, I haven’t been down there in a while but last time I was you could still walk through the wasteground where the houses used to be.

  • Blair

    JR,

    Such a parade would be unlikely to be passed by the Parades Commision on account of their being no precedence for it. Parades like that do of course take place in rasharkin, and the Protestants who live there do not go out and throw golf balls etc at them.

    Cullybackey Maine defenders held their annual parade on the 4th September with thirty five bands and over a thousand supporters.

    Does that help?

  • Blair

    Latcheekoo,

    Our enemies are not people who have a slight difference of opinion with us. They are people who want to destroy everything that we stand for, and quite a few of them are also perfectly willing to kill people in order to try and achieve that.

    You do not appease people like that.

  • Blair

    USA,

    Then that is the problem solved. No attacks from violent republicans and there is no problem.

  • Impartial Observer

    Err Neil if you turn right at the bottom of William Street it takes you down Broughshane Street towards Broadway and away from not towards the chapel.

    Some parades are along Market Road and then turn right along Broughshane Street away from the chapel at the new roundabouts at the end of Parkway, those through William Street turn right away from the chapel and miss it by 1/4 mile – just as well you didn’t accuse me of lying!

    Perhaps you are misremembering like Mary McAleese remembers bands playing the National Anthem (God Save the Queen btw not the Soldiers Song) outside her chapel – perhaps that’s waht you actually believe – in either case it is as you so succinctly put it “utter shite” for someone who says he lived a few hundred yards away!

  • Impartial Observer

    http://www.broadgreenradio.co.uk/images/cricket4.jpg

    Maybe he’ll lend you his boots Neil? Then you’ll only need to deferentially lower your eyes as the parade passes so as not to make eye contact with the members of the loyal orders in your role as a member of MOPE to know which way they are turning by looking at the R & L on your footwear.

    By the time you finish this blarney there’ll be parades of kick the pope bands marching up & down the aisles of All Saints during requiem masses – and worse still some people will believe you!

  • Peter Brown

    Neil

    You haven’t by any chance remembered speaking to father Chesney on his deathbed as well as the geography of the part of Ballymena where you used to live?

  • Impartial Observer

    Neil

    While you are trying to remember the geography of the part of Ballymena where you apparently lived for 15 years – you didn’t happen to visit a Donegal Republican priest on his deathbed around the same time? Your memory is as selective as someone else we all know I think….

  • Impartial Observer

    Hmm great minds thinking alike or fools seldom differing?

  • Neil

    Err Neil if you turn right at the bottom of William Street it takes you down Broughshane Street towards Broadway and away from not towards the chapel.

    Quite right you are, and by extension if you turn left you go past the chapel. I do remember parades doing just that, quick look on the parades commission website proves that, although the vast majority of parades do turn right at the bottom of William street.

    Some parades are along Market Road and then turn right along Broughshane Street away from the chapel at the new roundabouts at the end of Parkway, those through William Street turn right away from the chapel and miss it by 1/4 mile – just as well you didn’t accuse me of lying!

    And as I say those that turn left go directly past All Saints.

    Perhaps you are misremembering like Mary McAleese remembers bands playing the National Anthem (God Save the Queen btw not the Soldiers Song) outside her chapel – perhaps that’s waht you actually believe – in either case it is as you so succinctly put it “utter shite” for someone who says he lived a few hundred yards away!

    You’re getting carried away now. My stating that I lived in Ballymena does not equate to me saying I lived a few hundred yards away from anywhere. Ballymena’s not a big place, but as I think you probably know already, it’s not 400 yards across, so saying you lived in the town does not automatically put you within a few hundred yards of anything necessarily.

  • Impartial Observer

    Neil

    No parades that I am aware of turn left out of William Street towards the chapel – examples?

  • fyi

    43428 RBP No 1191 Cromkill Occidental Star (Ballymena) Ballymena 28th August

  • Neil

    Don’t have a whole lot of time for trawling atm, but here you are:

    http://www.paradescommission.org/parades/?parade=32401
    http://www.paradescommission.org/parades/?parade=32774
    http://www.paradescommission.org/parades/?parade=32832

    Any response to:

    a) the fact that I misremembered, from more than 15 years hence, the word Road as the word Street, being a fairly thin example of proof that I may not come from Ballymena? Or is conflating the word Street and Road instant proof of being a liar?
    b) your claim that the bands were moved to William Street at a time when the pubs were not open is either inaccurate or a lie (almost as high a crime as conflating the words Street and Road one might say), as the parades regularly take place on Fridays and Saturdays in the evening when the Slemish, O’Hanlons, The Inn, The Cosy Corner and maybe 2 or 3 more Catholic frequented bars are open for trade as one might expect on a week end?
    c) that I never suggested where in Ballymena that I lived (for obvious reasons), neither yards from any given spot as you state or as you consistently insinuate I’m lying about While you are trying to remember the geography of the part of Ballymena where you apparently lived for 15 years.

    I have read into it on the PC site, and yes it would appear that you are largely correct, most parades these days go down William Street and turn right. Though some do not, and from memory plenty of them used to come through the town, and on out to Broughshane via Broughshane Road.

    It would be interesting to see if you can come clean and admit you’re wrong on the points listed above, though either way the conversation’s dead. It all seems like a diversionary tactic to move away from the topic of the lady assaulted at an Orange parade on William street, but then that’s probably all lies too, hell she’s probably not even from Ballymena, especially if she makes a grave mistake such as conflate the words Road and Street (presumably people pretending to be from Ballymena who are not pepper their posts with intentional mistakes as I’m sure any info in the public domain most likely refers to Market Road as Market Road).