Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 1 November 2014

Orange Order parade passes peacefully on Donegall Street . . . but residents still fume

Orang Order parade passes without incident along Upper  Donegall Street
Orang Order parade passes without incident along Upper Donegall Street

Residents have called on the police to act on what they say are "constant" breaches of the Parades Commission's determinations in north Belfast.

The call came after an Orange Order parade on a contentious route passed off peacefully yesterday.

The parade passed St Patrick's Catholic Church on Donegall Street, previous scene of clashes.

Some 60 residents from New Lodge, North Queen Street and Carrick Hill areas held banners urging respect as around 400 Orangemen accompanied by a band passed the church, which rushed through five christenings in order to be empty ahead of the parade's passing just after 2.30pm.

Numbers of police vehicles and officers clad in riot gear swamped the area and the surrounding streets.

Frank Dempsey of Carrick Hill Residents' Association claimed the band had broken the ruling. While the band played the hymn Abide With Me as it passed the church, Mr Dempsey said its rendition of another tune before the junction with Donegall Street broke the determination.

"They were supposed to play hymns respectfully from the Westlink down Clifton Street and past the church," he said. "But up until the lights they played It's A Long Way To Tipperary, which is a British military marching song – it's not a hymn."

A PSNI spokesman added: "No complaints have been received by police, however, any alleged breaches of a Parades Commission determination will be investigated and a report forwarded to both the Parades Commission and Public Prosecution Service."

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