Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Parades Commission hits road to hear public's views on marching

Peter Osborne
Peter Osborne

The Parades Commission is embarking on a series of public events in a bid to gauge feelings on the controversial issue.

The first roadshow is in Kilkeel from 6-8pm this evening and the commission is appealing to the public to go along and make their voices heard.

Five sessions are to be held across Northern Ireland in the coming weeks. Commissioners say they are keen to hear from local people, and listen to their views on parading and their work.

A number of commissioners will be available at each event for people to meet and discuss issues in an informal setting.

The events, which happen every year before the parading season, are open to the public as well as public representatives.

Parades Commission chairman Peter Osborne said: "As a commission we value the opportunity to engage with members of the public and those with an interest in parading. These meetings are a chance for us to meet with people outside of the context of individual disputed parades.

"In representing civic society it is important we understand and reflect upon the broad views of the wider public, when reaching fair and balanced decisions on the small number of contentious parades. We are looking forward to the series and hope that members of the public will take this opportunity to engage with us."

Events take place from 6-8pm in Kilkeel's Nautilus Centre today; the Civic Centre in Antrim on March 6; Grosvenor House in Belfast on March 7; Roe Valley Arts & Cultural Centre in Limavady on March 11, and Ranfurly House in Dungannon on March 13.

For details contact the Parades Commission on 028 9089 5900.

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