Clyde Valley Flute Band to parade Rathcoole

Larne-based Clyde Valley Flute Band is to parade Rathcoole next month.

The Parades Commission has been notified of the band’s intention to take part in a procession through the Newtownabbey estate on Saturday, December 7.

Commencing at 1.00pm, the one-band parade is expected to draw around 50 participants and 30 spectators.

The notification also states the band “will not be travelling to another town or place”.

The application follows speculation over whether Clyde Valley would be taking part in the Apprentice Boys of Derry’s Shutting of the Gate’s demonstration on the same day.

The band, also known as The Gun Runners, was at the centre of controversy after members wore uniforms bearing a Parachute Regiment insignia and a Soldier F’ symbol at the annual Relief of Derry celebrations in August.

The Parachute Regiment soldier, identified only as F’, is charged with murder over the events of Bloody Sunday.

Police officers flanked the band and later stopped their bus and took the names of some members. In the wake of this, unionist politicians met with senior PSNI officers to voice concern about the police response on the day.

Relatives of Bloody Sunday victims expressed outrage following the display and have said the band should not return to the city for the Shutting of the Gates parade.

However, it is understood, not all ABOD clubs, and accompanying bands, who attend in August return for the December event.

Meanwhile, ABOD governor Graeme Stenhouse, confirmed to the News Letter on Wednesday that talks remain “ongoing” with the Bloody Sunday Trust following a meeting on Tuesday night.

Mr Stenhouse said: “We’re trying to defuse things, calm everything down and remind our members of the standards that are expected when they come to the Maiden City and more importantly, remind them why they are in the Maiden City and what they are commemorating. We need to remember why we are in Londonderry in December and in August.”

Published on the 14th of November 2019
Article taken from the Larne Times

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