Healing Through Remembering (new chair Dawn Purvis) refused PEACE III Funding

When Dawn Purvis was defeated at the Stormont elections, a number of commentators on slugger including myself predicted that she would end up with a job in the quango / do-gooder industry. Indeed I suggested that far from helping those whom she claimed to represent (working class unionists in East Belfast) her time especially since she left the PUP had been more directed towards increasing her profile amongst what are sometimes known as the liberal dissidents. Many members of the quasi voluntary sector and quangocrats along with assorted media-luvvies had always seemed keen on Purvis, representing as she claimed, a supposedly left wing working class soft unionism, with the added excitement for the middle classes of association with the “rough boys” (actually criminal thugs) of the UVF. Purvis seemed a sort of Eliza Doolittle figure to those sorts of people. The fact that she had remarkably little popularity amongst those whom she claimed to represent and was pretty transfer repellent to middle class East Belfast unionism almost made her more exciting – a prophet without honour etc.

As such it was really only a matter of time before Purvis obtained some sort of role amongst the liberal dissidents: after all such sycophancy to them could hardly go unrewarded especially when almost every other politician even Alliance these days ignores them.

It was therefore little surprise that Purvis was appointed Chair of Healing Through Remembering (interestingly one cannot comment on this news item on their website). The issue of any organisation with such a name and such proclaimed aims appointing Purvis needs to be noted and questioned. Some on this website have suggested that my recurrent posting of the theme of Purvis is monotonous, even tedious, which I accept is true. However, no one has ever produced any real explanation for regarding the former mouth piece in chief of loyalist murderers as somehow someone worthy of running a supposedly cross community organisation devoted to victims and such like.

To go over the charges against Purvis yet again. Dawn Purvis joined the PUP in 1994. It is unclear whether this was before or after the episode when the UVF entered the Heights Bar in Loughinisland and murdered six people watching a Republic of Ireland football match. Purvis has never enlightened us as to whether or not that was the spur to her joining: maybe she cannot remember. There are also a number of things which the now Chair of Healing Through Remembering seems unable or unwilling to remember. Although sadly not available online after her election as an MLA, Purvis claimed that prior to joining the PUP she did not know who the UVF were. This from a woman born in Northern Ireland in the late 1960s and who, hence, grew up during the Troubles. Indeed in an Irish Times profile quoted on her own website she claimed that when she was first asked to join the party “My first reaction was ‘clear off or Mummy will kill me’” – this due to the PUP’s link to the UVF. It seems that the new chair of Healing Through Remembering has forgotten at something between those two sets of claims.

Purvis remained in the PUP for a large number of murders by their other halves in the UVF / Red Hand Commando:

1994 26 2003 1
1995 1 2004 2
1996 4 2005 4
1997 4 2006 0
1998 4 2007 0
1999 1 2008 0
2000 6 2009 0
2001 1 2010 1
2002 1

It seems that the new chair of Healing Through Remembering has conveniently forgotten the litany of murders committed by the UVF during her membership of the PUP. The above list is not exhaustive and a number of the people killed by “unknown” groups are very likely to have been victims of the UVF. It certainly leaves out the murder of Lisa Dorian, murdered and secretly buried almost certainly by a member of the UVF (along with one from the LVF). Furthermore Purvis seemes to have forgotten the drug dealing, prostitution rackets (particularly ironic for a supposed champion of women and children’s rights) protection rackets and generalised criminality which the UVF visited on mainly working class unionists during her membership of the PUP. The only time she seemed to comment on such things was when she as prominent in demanding more Danegeld for the terrorists.

Purvis also had as mentor David Ervine: the man who is lauded for opposing sectarianism etc. This the man who was arrested with a bomb which had been intended to murder innocent Catholics for the simple reason that they were Catholics. The man who also told people on television interviews that he had not forgotten how to make bombs; who refused ever to talk about his past activities in the UVF even in a book to be published after his death: Voices from the Grave. In that book, however, he talked with absolutely no remorse nor regret about the murders of Catholics such as in the Dublin and Monaghan bombings. Yet this is what Purvis has to say about Ervine: “He was such a gentleman. David Ervine was bigger than anything I ever knew. He was a key to the peace process in a way that I don’t think people recognise. He loved his wife to bits, and he was a great friend, extremely loyal, would have done anything for you.” Once again Purvis’s memory seems somewhat selective.

On her other mentor Gusty Spence she also seems to have what might be described as a selective memory. Spence was one of the first murderers of the current Troubles: he murdered a Catholic barman (Peter Ward) in a purely sectarian attack. That was in 1966 long before the most recent IRA campaign had killed anyone. However, despite that she said of Spence: “Gusty is so wise.” Her friend Gusty of course must have accepted his guilt: that is a prerequisite of being released as a life sentence prisoner. However, he is now claiming he did not commit the murder. Clearly Spence has forgotten something (or of course is lying). Purvis seems to have forgotten or ignored her hero Spence’s selective memory.

Possibly the single greatest example of Purvis’s hypocrisy in becoming Chair of Healing Through Remembering is that she was the leader of a protest when the convicted double child murderer Billy Hutchinson was arrested regarding withholding evidence over the murder of Catholic teenager Thomas Devlin. The fact that she is willing to proclaim herself a champion for women and children’s rights; has become the chairperson of an organisation called Healing Through Remembering yet was willing publicly to oppose the investigation into a horrific murder speaks volumes. That Healing Through Remembering was willing to appoint her in spite of that and all the other issues shows a particularly selective memory on their part.

One ray of hope in this is that since its appointment of Purvis things have been going a little less well for Healing Through Remembering. On the company’s website they relate that yesterday (12th August 2011) they were turned down for some Peace III funding. Although the liberal dissidents may love to love Purvis it is just possible that someday the gravy train will stop.

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  • Rab

    Tedious. Yes. I doubt anyone’s biography would stand up to such selective scrutiny.

  • Turgon

    Yes tedious and no one has yet provided any proper explanation or justification for Purvis’s rank hypocrisy nor explained why she is the darling of some liberal dissidents. Interestingly she is not the darling of the unionist working classes nor real victims groups on both sides or cross community ones.

  • ulsterobserver

    There is little surprise from anyone that Dawn has been slotted into this position ! My surprise it took so long after her defeat in recent elections.
    In a Country that rewards so called ex terrorists and its supporters this is what happens. I do hope there will forensics examination of the some Republicans from Mick.

  • TwilightoftheProds


    In terms of the liberal ‘dissidents’ (presumably you mean they are outside most public opinion but still pushing ahead with their own patricular agenda) – I would be agnostic – some projects/organisations/individuals do things well, others very badly, and a great many ineffectively or indifferently…….

    so some questions for you…

    what might a Turgon supported dealing with the past project look like?

    Maybe you aren’t keen- Would you want in preference, amnesia?

    If so, (and there is an argument for it) -how would you create amnesia (or make the past less relevant)- given so many local groups of all sorts of political persuasions seem intent on remembering?

    Dawn Purvis doesn’t float your boat- is there any way that those with a history connected to loyalism or republicanism might have any role to play? They don’t need to be validated (or demonised) – what about throwing a spotlight on them though? Or do you think even bad publicity is good publicity?

  • That was a looooong post to read through to get to the final three sentence paragraph that linked to HTR’s statement. Just saying.

  • Mark

    That holiday has done you the world of good Turgon , you seem so much more mellow .

    I haven’t follow Dawn’s career that closely but she’s certainly seems to have gotten under your skin . A definite pet hate of yours by all accounts .

    I personally like your style of posting however if one of us mere mortals in the cheap seats played the woman the way you did , Sepp Blatter would be out with his cards .

  • Turgon

    I speak for no one other than myself. However, I do know quite a number of victims: indeed I would regard some of them as friends and am also related by marriage to one victim.

    All of them would like to see those who murdered their loved ones arrested and prosecuted. They seem to have no time for bogus truth and reconcillation typed events. They are aware that even if convicted the murderers would only recieve two years in gaol but seem still to prefer that to alternatives. Furthermore they are aware that there is relatively little chance that the murderers will even get as far as a courtroom. However, the fear in those who committed those acts: the fear that one day they might be arrested; the fear that one day they might stand in court seems preferable to the victims than an amnesty.

    Certainly the victims I know and the real victims groups I know a little about seem to have absolutely no time for the peace processors and those involved in the “peace and reconcillation industry”.

  • Turgon

    I hope this post was far from mellow about Purvis. It is actually merely the recounting of a series of facts. That those facts may reflect poorly on the individual in question is not my fault. People tend to be extremely selective about facts when talking about some people here in Northern Ireland. I am no different. I have presented a series of facts about Dawn Purvis: selective I know. However, in response no one has ever been able to do anything save attempt via moral gymnastics to try to contextualise them or else minimise them or indulge in whataboutery.

    I may be in a small minority of people posting these things about Purvis (maybe even a minority of one) but inconvenient as they may be to some these facts are there.

  • “As such it was really only a matter of time before Purvis obtained some sort of role amongst the liberal dissidents”

    Turgon, how long has Dawn been involved with HTR? Casual readers of Slugger might think from your analysis that she’d lost her seat at Stormont and been given a position on the HTR Board whereas she declares her Board of Directors membership in the Register of Interests in 2007 and the HTR 2009 Annual Report lists her as Honorary Treasurer of the Board of Directors.

  • oracle

    It’s okay Turgon you can tell me and i’ll keep it to myself……… did Dawn knock you back or what?

  • This is a bit awkward.
    Most Sluggerites will be aware of my opinions of the Conflict Resolution “industry”. Yet I like Dawn Purvis. Clearly I dont have much time for the place she has been but I admire the fact that she is making a journey.
    And to a greater or lesser extent we have all been on a journey.
    And er…..she smiled at me……twice. And I like her.
    I really am that shallow.

    But it raises questions. Some of them amusing. Like just how many MLAs hedged their bets in May by applying for other jobs. No indication that Ms Purvis did so. But Im sure a few did.
    Im glad “Turgon” mentions the Liberal Dissidents. There is certainly a strain of middle class do-gooders who prey on working class folks and many a poor working class soul has been led astray and been made a “pet project” in the Eliza Dooloittle style.

    Yet I think Dawn Purvis is a smarter cookie than the Liberal Dissidents who have adopted her. And hopefully they will be dancing to her tune rather than the way that they planned it.
    When you get a reputation for getting up early, you can lie in bed all day.

  • Turgon

    Thank you for bringing that up. Healing Through Remembering can answer why they had Purvis on their board of directors at the same time as she was protesting against Hutchinson’s arrest. (Link to demonstrate date here).

  • Turgon

    I can only say that any answer which explained my views of Purvis in the context you alledge might actually be woman playing or maybe appearence-ist.

    I can assure you of entirely pure, disinterested and platonic loathing for Purvis unaffected by any slight against myself seeing as she has never done any such.

  • Rab

    ‘Peace processors’ (as opposed to what, warmongers?)

    Media-luvvies (soft-targets since everyone with a soul hates them).

    Liberal dissidents (this is a new one to me but I like the sound of it.)

    And the “peace and reconcillation industry” (had my suspicions it myself but I suppose Northern Ireland has to make something)

    The Eliza Doo-little carries a real sting in its tail (congratulations on that one)

    …but to cut to the chase, what you’re really saying is, damn it, you just don’t like Dawn Purvis. Well since you already knew that and your routine attacks upon her are, by you’re own admission, becoming tedious, why don’t you move on?

    God knows, Dawn Purvis has tried to…

  • I think I can claim a certain credit for “Liberal Dissidents”. A phrase which I encourage others to use.
    A phrase I use to describe the “liberals” who promoted the Peace Process on the basis that they would be part of the Solution.
    They assumed that SF and DUP would be in governance as minor partners to SDLP and UUP.
    And when that didnt turn out the way they intended…..they have become “dissidents” inventing ever more pressure groups to re-write the Agreement.

  • “Thank you for bringing that up.”

    Turgon, I thought from the title that this was going to be an opportunity for you to fulminate against HTR rather than Dawn! Have you nothing to say about Pat Sheehan’s membership of the HTR Board of Director? He was co-opted in December 2009 and has a more interesting paramilitary pedigree than Dawn.

  • “I have presented a series of facts about Dawn Purvis: selective I know.”

    My very criticism of the actions of the Civil Rights fraternity back in the day, Turgon 😉

  • I actually thought she would have been “awarded” something a bit more cushy…. whistles….NIHRCish….

    But I wonder why they were turned down, Peace III seems to have become a bit more discriminating recently.

  • TwilightoftheProds


    I would say the liberal dissidents do exist – but I think that they are of the ilk that really don’t like the GFA etc, because as you say the outworking was DUP-SF replacing the ‘naice’ SDLP UUP – and they usually portray it as a sectarian carve up (as if our party system could produce anything else) which has papered over the activities of the once miltant and violent and frozen our sectarianism for all time.

    the HTR crowd and the bulk of the conflict resolution type groups don’t seem to fit that bill- as they would seem to be supportive of GFA and the wider peace process – come hell or high water.

    So I think you have accurately identified a group but maybe misapplied it.

    Turgon- Fair enough. Sticking people in the dock is used in many ‘dealing with the past’ scenarios. I’d say it’s insufficient in itself, for the simple practical reasons that their isn’t enough time,money and surviving admissable evidence to make more than a small dent. But yeah, blanket amnesties are loaded with problems. In fact, most ‘human rights’ thinking seems to be very much in favour of accountability for wrongs done and very much against impunity for past naughtiness – you have kept a close eye on things – how does this square with the conflict resolution ‘industry’ here?

  • Nunoftheabove


    “I speak for no one other than myself”. Y’got that right.

  • granni trixie

    Turgon: you are pushing at an open door as regards the consistent moral line and sentiments expressed above. Thanks for all those facts about DPs “journey”- I only knew a few facts but more ‘intuition’ about self interest was brought to a similar position as yourself. In particular I questioned at the time how one earth she got a Slugger award (infact I too am surprised that Mick “allows” this post but when the cats away….).

    (BTW,I hold the same views re David Ervine).

    However I differ to many contributers here in that I dislike pejorative terms used to describe people trying to do some mending (reconciliation, con. resolution etc). I include HTR in this and have a positive view of their work
    Their research and publications of the nitty gritty of dealing with the past for instance are very well thought through. I would regret if they had not the resources to continue this painstaking work.

    This is is one of the reasons I thought they had made a serious misjudgement in making DP Chair (and how did that happen?).

  • Mick Fealty


    What has this post got to do with the substantive points you make: Dawn Purvis’ appointment as Chair; and the lack of funding through Peace III?

    Most of the rest is a recount of how you don’t like Ms P. But you don’t tell us why it matters to the rest of us who don’t necessarily share your views.

    As editor, whether it comes from commenters or bloggers, I simply don’t want to hear what people feel about their opponents. New light on old issues yes.

    Why? Firstly, it’s dull. And secondly, it more often than not leads you to ‘play the man rather than the ball’. By necessity some of that gets ‘tolerated’ in the comment zone.

    But I really don’t appreciate it coming from the blogging team. It rightly leads others to conclude that I run a pretty hypocritical ship. One rule for the officer class, and another for the crew!

  • Turgon

    I have posted about Dawn Purvis’s appointment as Chair of Healing Through Remembering. I have posted a series of facts about Ms. Purvis. Actually I have posted very little about my opinions regarding her. I accept that my views of her are well known but I would ask you to point to any errors of fact in my statements regarding her.

    As Granni Trixie has stated immediately above your contribution I have demonstrated a series of facts about Dawn Purvis’s “journey”.

    Now challenge the veracity of the facts.

  • Mick Fealty

    What has any of this got do with the main news points?

  • Turgon

    Dawn Purvis has been appointed to the position of Chair of Healing Through Remembering. Hence, her past has a significant relevance.

    Her company – Healing Through Remembering has just been refused PEACE III monies. As such Dawn Purvis is a matter of current debate. Part of that debate is indeed her past. Her past is clearly not that well known judging by Granni Trixie’s comment.

    This is clearly your website and you make the rules. Now by all means pull down my post should you wish. Indeed by all means bar me from posting should you wish: that is entirely your right.

    The post seems relatively news worthy especially in light of the fact that it is the most commented on blog piece of the day.

  • Turgon,
    I disagree of a number of points. Most of us must be well aware of Purvis’ role in the PUP and her singular lack of electoral success and her ambivalence about the activities of the UVF criminals up to the murder of Mr. Moffet.
    Now I know nothing about the organization Healing Through Remembering and I am not enamoured of the plethora of organizations which are acting separately in dealing with the past. Similarly, I know nothing about Peace III, who they are, who sits on their board and how they award monies to petitioners.
    I wish you had explained those, maybe even do an article on the “peace industry” in toto. You are more than capable of doing that.

  • If a persons “past” is not relevant, then it would be the end of several threads where the Past and alleged Past of several 1970s figures has been ruthlessly and rightly scrutinised on several Slugger threads.
    I say again that I admire Ms Purvis (who Turgon states is a favourite of liberal dissidents)…..who I last saw at a Slugger organised event in December 2010…….but her controversial past is much more recent than the 1970s.
    And surely that makes her appointment “newsworthy” as indeed was Pat Sheehans co-option.

  • “On the company’s website they relate that yesterday (12th August 2011) they were turned down for some Peace III funding. Although the liberal dissidents may love to love Purvis it is just possible that someday the gravy train will stop.”

    HTR has been almost wholly dependent on EU funding for its activities. In 2008 £152,653 out of £161,653 and in 2009 £232,696 out of £251,276 came from that source. It spent £409 on consultancy fees in 2008 and £42,762 in 2009.

  • Thank you Mick Fealty for tackling a poor article from a valuable contributor head on.

    The connections between the various issues are poorly made. The headline story that Healing Through Remembering were refused funding by the Peace III program is barely news in itself. Peace III funding is distributed largely by competitive tender process and many organisations will be refused funding. Unless there is a specific connection between Dawn Purvis’s appointment to Chair of the organisation and the refusal, it is hard to see why it is worthy of a headline.

    There are other distortions in the article, which imply that board members are paid and that the organisation is profi-making. This information is a matter of public record and a more responsible investigation would be revealing in this regard.

    Overall, I can only conclude that you have allowed your dislike to Dawn Purvis to cloud your journalistic senses, and would urge you to revisit the article.

    I should note that I am a former employee of Healing Through Remembering. I offer this information to inform any issues of partisanship. I am however not privy to current information on the organisation nor do I in any way speak on the organisation’s behalf.

    Keep up the good work, and I look forward to reading more on Slugger in the future.

  • Turgon

    To clarify:
    The failure of HTR to get PEACE III funding is potentially newsworthy. The fact that it is called a “News” item on HTR’s website would imply that they at any rate regard it as “News”. On a blog it is also up to bloggers to decide what is newsworthy. Furthermore this blog is not specificly nor solely a news blog.

    Dawn Purvis’s appointment is newsworthy.

    At no time have I commented on pay for board members: it is disingenuous to imply otherwise.

    I did not make any comment about the organisation being profit making or otherwise save to note that it is was not a charity. If it is a charity I will ammend that part of the post.

    Incidentaly I have absolutely no interest in whether you regard me as a “valuable contributor” or anything else: it is an irrelevance to the debate.

  • When was she appointed?
    To whom was the news item on the website directed.
    Is Healing Through Remembering a QUANGO?
    Are QUANGOs normally paid?
    Does the organisation have charitable status?

    If you do not know these things, I suggest you find out.

    I am sorry that you confer no value on the opinion of your readers.

  • Turgon

    Mr. Lambkin,
    You are clearly itching to tell us all these things so just go on ahead.

    As to you being sorry I do not value the opinion of my readers: that is factually incorrect. To help you I will repeat what I said:

    I have absolutely no interest in whether you regard me as a “valuable contributor” or anything else: it is an irrelevance to the debate.

  • sonofstrongbow

    HTR and Dawn Purvis? They deserve each other. I’ll try and forget both as soon as possible.

  • Turgon,

    Apologies for the curtness of my previous comment, and for communicating an itchiness of sorts. If tiredness is a suitable excuse then that is it.

    I am not in a position to tell you these things. I believe the public record is, and that this debate would benefit from the information. I note from the organisation’s main webpage that it is registered with justgiving, and this I think implies charitable status. Perhaps worth checking.

    My communication regarding the value of your contribution to slugger was specifically for the interest of Mick Fealty, and generally for other readers of this post’s comments and the blog in general, yourself included. Its purpose in part was to bring a little detente to the brinkmanship raised in your response to Mick regarding the removal of the post and the blocking of your posts.

    I do hope this is a success, and that I can continue enjoying your posts in the future.

    warm regards from Vietnam


  • Turgon

    Mr. Lambkin,
    Your apology is of course not accepted. You tell us you are not in a position to comment on the issues you raise despite having worked for the organisation. That is not credible. You accuse me of distortions and then fail to clarify your claims that I am making distortions. That is dishonest.

    If you know that the organisation is a charity then tell us and I will modify the post. In short Mr. Lambkin put up or shut up.

    Your claims about my interaction with Mick are dishonest in the extreme. I do not know if you are a regular reader as this is the first blog entry you have commented on but regular readers will know that I have always accepted Mick’s authority and ownership of this site without question. In no way was I indulging in brinkmanship: I was suggesting that if Mick thought the post unacceptable he was welcome to remove it; furthermore I was clearly and publicly pointing out that I would accept his authority up to and including removing me as a blogger. It was not brinkmanship in any shape manner or form: indeed it was practically the opposite.

    Your attempt to spin the exact opposite motive into my commets from the obvious shows dishonesty in the extreme.

    Had you wished to communicate with Mick Fealty you could have emailed him. Instead your comment had nothing to do with “detente”. Indeed I regarded it as little better than man playing.

    Again I tell you I have no interest in whether you enjoy my posts. I will not remove your comments even if they descend into man playing but I have no interest in your regards from Vietnam or elsewhere whilst you continue with disingenuous and dishonest slurs.

  • Bhuel folks, commenting on the site has been quite the experience.

    I leave you with your multiple truths.

  • slappymcgroundout

    “Healing Through Remembering is actually of course not a charity but a company.”

    From the HTR site:

    Healing Through Remembering (HTR) is a limited company with charitable status.

    Angus donates here (last listed):


  • slappymcgroundout

    Angus’ site:


    As always, Google is your friend.

    Lastly, the problem with the piece as Mick so rightly reports is that there isn’t so much as a microscopic speck of info that relates Dawn Purvis to denial of funding. Lumping both in together creates the inference and/or implication that there is so some link, at least for the headline only readers (and to that extent the article is patently unfair). Without the link, do 2 separates pieces/stories. One on why you think Ms. Purvis is wrong for the job and the other on the failure to obtain the one source of funds. Again, otherwise, to borrow your own words, you come off as “disingenuous” and “dishonest”.

  • “going a little less well for Healing Through Remembering. On the company’s website they relate that yesterday (12th August 2011) they were turned down for some Peace III funding. Although the liberal dissidents may love to love Purvis it is just possible that someday the gravy train will stop.”

    Turgon, as a TUV-leaning(?) political commentator, I thought you would be more concerned about HTR’s cross-border context. A browse through its tendering process throws up this: “a Belfast-based organisation working across Northern Ireland and the Border Region of the Republic of Ireland” and this: “A project supported by the PEACE III Programme and managed for the Special EU Programmes Body by the Community Relations Council/Pobal Consortium.”

    HTR’s context would appear to be the nationalist orientated Strand 2 rather than the all embracing Strand 3 of the 1998 Agreement. Perhaps Dawn hasn’t read the small print.

  • vanhelsing

    “Healing through Remembering’ – what will these groups do when the final tranche of ‘peace money’ dries up?

  • Interesting question, vanhelsing. It also poses another question; how and when will be know that the cure is complete?

  • vanhelsing

    Joe I’ve had a bit of experience dealing with a few of these type of groups and when you look at their staffing / management costs it’s very much jobs for the boys / girls. I might be entering into a generalisation there but my wife put it best recently when I told her that after five years of training in her chosen profession and 10 years in the sector she earns less that some ‘community managers’…

    Joe – regarding a complete cure tbh I have no idea but I would imagine there will be a lot of whining. We’re currently entering into Phase 2 of Peace 3 and then that will be it. Anyone who works with these groups knows what I’m talking about.. 🙂

  • Thanks for the blogpost ad slappy. Curiously coincidental that the last post is also about Healing Through Remembering. Must write more. And don’t go through it too carefully Turgon, you might find out what other despicable opinions I hold.

    Re Peace III, it’s important not confuse project and organisational remits. Funding is always tied to something, aspirations on the other hand need not be.

  • “Healing Through Remembering is actually of course not a charity but a company.”

    Correction, Turgon:

    Company Registration No: NI048343 and Charity No: XR69561

  • Turgon

    Thanks Nevin,
    I have ammended the post accordingly

  • Drumlins Rock

    I have heard that there will probably be a “Peace IV” of some sort, smaller pot but still enough to keep much of it going, however there seems to be a small shift away from funding the “getalongerist” society and more towards funding more traditional groups on both sides, often with the local councils acting as middlemen, I hope this is the case as I think far more can be achieved.

  • I sincerely hope that Drumlins Rock is correct.
    But really the defeat of FAUX lets get alongerism can only be achieved if we are aware of it. Its greatest achievement (a bit like Satan) is convincing people it doesnt actually exist.

  • SEUPB – What is the PEACE III Programme?. As I’ve already noted HTR (and other projects related to the past) receives most of its funding via the Pobal/CRC consortium.

    Lead Council offices are listed on this Diane Dodds webpage.

  • I’ve looked for a synopsis of the HTR Voyager project, the one where the funding request is now under review, but can’t find one. Perhaps it’s based on the CRC 2002-3 funded “Corrymeela ‘Voyager’ [pdf file] – musical arts programme involving artists and victims of violence from a variety of diverse cultural backgrounds”. I wonder if any of the paramilitary inspired marching bands could be classified as artists; few of them would be of the quality of our current piping world champions.

  • Great post, Turgon. Healing Through Remembering: still waiting for them to return my emails and phone calls and tweets.

    “Healing Through Ignoring” they’re called in my house 😉

  • Stephen Blacker

    I cant believe that Slugger continues to let Turgon repeat his misleading drivel. To take a sound-bite and make a story out of it is an easy way to lambast an opponent but it is only showing your vile desperate attempts to sully another persons name.

    Turgon’s obvious attempt to belittle Ms Purvis by saying people seem to think she is an “Eliza Dolittle” type, if people do think this it is probably because they have talked to and listened to Dawn in person, something that Turgon has never done but he/she still professes to be an expert on this woman.

    Ms Purvis has always denounced all types of crimial act on numerious occasions over the years but that does not suit Turgon’s agenda so it is ignored – no surprise there then. It is strange that Turgon continues to repeat his pet sound-bite that Dawn joined the PUP in 1994, something she did in the belief that it was to stop the likes of murders in Loughinisland.

    It is ironic that the party that Turgon’s recent political hero (Jim Allister) was in opposed the Loyalist ceasefires later in 1994. It is also interesting to note that the British, Irish and US Governments have pushed Unionists towards the vision Gusty Spence spoke about in his speech on the 12th July 1977 – equality not oppression!

    It is also no surprise that Turgon looks forward to the day that Healing Through Remembering runs out of funding, this group has a super mix of people involved with events that are aimed at helping to bridge the gaps in our still divided society. I guess this type of thinking comes as part of the cheerleading code for TUV stalwarts.

    It is very strange to me that Turgon is taking credit for predicting that Ms. Purvis would get a cushy job given to her if she was not elected. Being the Chair of HTR is an unpaid position just like the other 9 Board Members so I cant see how this is classed as a job.

    There is 4 Staff members and an Intern on the books of HTR no doubt Turgon will be glad they might not get funding and go on the dole. Everyone goes on a journey and as they do things are learnt and mistakes made, some get educated and others stay the same. Thankfully most got educated and the Good Friday Agreement was born and groups like HTR are doing their bit to make our society a more pleasant and safer place. Well done to them and all the other groups – paid or unpaid.

    Below is the speech I refer to in my post and the original speech can be seen in the Political section of the Linenhall Library, Belfast;

    Long Kesh 12th July 1977.

    We never tire of celebrating the advent in history when William of Orange achieved for us in 1690 Civil and Religious freedom. We, the Protestants of Ireland, were the persecuted in those days and now things are somewhat reversed. But is persecution necessary for the establishment of the inherent freedoms of mankind? Has persecution ever changed a person’s views? Do we really want freedom and the pursuit of happiness at the expense of some other unfortunate soul?…I submit that it is fear which makes one people oppress another…We are living in the most socially and legalistically oppressive society in the Western Hemisphere…Polarisation complete with one section of the community cut off from the other except for some middle-class contacts which appear to be more concerned about their class than community…WE are a police state with the accompanying allegations of torture and degrading treatment to suspects undergoing interrogation…Even yet we still have men nonsensically counselling that victory is just around the corner. Victory over whom – the IRA? Or do they mean victory over the Roman Catholic community?…The fears of Roman Catholics will not go away because bigoted Unionist politicians say so.

    We in Northern Ireland are plagued with super-loyalists…If one does not agree with their bigoted and fascist views then one is a ‘taig-lover’, or a ‘communist’…Unfortunately, we have too many of these people in our own ranks. No fascist or bigot can expect sympathy or understanding in the UVF compounds…The sooner we realise that our trust has been abused, and the so-called political leadership we followed was simply a figment the sooner we will attempt to fend for ourselves politically and to commence articulation in that direction…ours was a sick society long before the fighting men came on the scene. Life in Ulster before the troubles was artificial…We want employment and decent homes like all human beings, and Loyalists will no longer suffer their deprivation stoically lest their outcries be interpreted as disloyalty…The politicians seemingly cannot or will not give us the peace we so earnestly desire, so I therefore call upon all the paramilitaries to call a universal ceasefire. To open up dialogue with each other in order to pursue ways and means of making such a ceasefire permanent. Eventually Loyalist and Republican must sit down together for the good of our country. Dialogue will have to come about sometime, so why not now? There is no victory in Ulster, not for the IRA, or the UVF, the police or the army. There is only victory for humanity and common sense.

    Gusty Spence

  • Stephen Blacker

    Thank goodness for appeals – here is an update on the funding from Peace III for HTR that I have just seen on their website

    “Following on from the HTR members update dated on 12 August 2011, we have received notification that the decision regarding from the SEUPB Peace III funding has been overturned.

    Please see the following statement from Dawn Purvis, Chair of Healing Through Remembering for more information:

    An SEUPB Review Panel meeting was held last week and HTR was invited to make its case that the rejection of the PEACE III application was unreasonable. Following the meeting we have been informed that the panel overturned the rejection. This means that HTR’s funding application will now progress to stage 2 of the funding process.

    We are delighted with this news and will keep you informed of progress.

    Best wishes
    Dawn Purvis
    Chair ”

    There is now a strong chance that the paid jobs at HTR will be secure for a while.