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All you’ll ever need to know about the Twelfth of July - in numbers

By Ivan Little

It's one of the biggest organisations in Northern Ireland and one of the best known.

Everyone knows the religious beliefs of its exclusively Protestant members and its politics are hardly a secret.

Yet few people outside the Orange Order have the foggiest idea of what goes on behind the closed doors of the institution.

Many of the Order’s rituals and practices are still shrouded in mystery. Gradually, however, the Orange Order is trying to dispel the myths surrounding it.

David Scott is the education officer of the Order and works from the Orange headquarters at Schomberg House in Belfast.

He recently hit the headlines after he was handed a major award by a Catholic school in Belfast for his groundbreaking work in trying to break down barriers. The award came from St Patrick’s, Bearnageeha, where he has given talks over the past seven years.

David is a member of Drumlough Heroes LOL from Northern Ireland’s town on the hill — Rathfriland in Co Down — and also the bass drummer of Drumlough Pipe Band. He gave us an offbeat guide to his lodge by numbers and a few other Orange facts as well.

153 The number of Drumlough Heroes LOL. Essentially it means the lodge was the 153rd set up after the Battle of the Diamond in 1795.

56 The number of Orangemen in the lodge. There are no women.

93 The age of the oldest member of the Drumlough Heroes.

17 The age of the youngest member.

219 The number of the junior Orange lodge associated with the Drumlough Heroes. It’s named after Alexander Brown, who was a caretaker of the Orange hall, two miles south of Rathfriland. He was also a member of Drumlough Heroes LOL.

6 The number of times Drumlough Heroes LOL 153 marches collectively as a lodge every year: four times to church services; once to a Battle of the Somme commemoration and once on the Twelfth. Individual members also take part in other processions around Northern Ireland.

8 The number of years between the hosting of Twelfth celebrations in Rathfriland. It’s back in the town this year with seven visiting districts on parade, from Lower Iveagh, Banbridge, Lower Iveagh West, Bann Valley, Loughbrickland, Gilford and Newry.

1.4 The number of miles the Drumlough Heroes Lodge will have to walk to the field this year “But with the hills in Rathfriland it feels more like three miles,” says David.

£0.00 The cost of hiring a band for the lodge. Drumlough Pipe Band comes free for the day — though the lodge makes a donation to the band.

1942 The year Drumlough Pipe Band was formed.

5 The number of the principal families who make up most of the Drumlough lodge and band. They’re the McDowells, the Hennings, Maginnesses, the Bells and the Scotts.

£300 The cost of hiring a bus to take lodge members to Waringstown for last year’s Twelfth.

£120 How much it will take to hire a limousine to chauffeur the lodge’s older members to the field this year. It’s only a short walk but it is Rathfriland, remember.

0 The number of times the Drumlough lodge has been turned down by the Parades Commission for approval to march.

£1,500 The estimated cost of |replacing the Drumlough Heroes LOL banner, which was unfurled in 1973.

46 The number of people who have watched the only YouTube clip of Drumlough Orange Hall. It features a search in the dark for a missing phone by two people called Stephen and Alex. It's not worth the effort!

£60 The price of a new sash.

£80 The cost of the last bowler hat David Scott priced 20 years ago. Drumlough lodge members don’t wear them.

£5 The dues that the Drumlough lodge members pay at their monthly meetings.

£600 The amount of money which the lodge collected for their last charity fundraising effort. The recipients were children with|cancer.

1,000 The number of people who usually turn up for the lodge’s annual barbecue and treasure hunt on the last Friday of July. It’s billed as the area’s biggest barbecue.

1 The one and only time in the 70s that the lodge’s hall was damaged in a petrol bomb attack. “Relations here are extremely good,” said David.

1912 The year Drumlough’s past Worshipful Master Thomas Morrow died on the Titanic on his way to start a new life in North America.

20,000 The number of people expected to attend this year’s Twelfth celebrations in Rathfriland.

180 The estimated number of lodges and bands taking part in the Twelfth in Rathfriland.

4 The different types of bands which will be playing at the Twelfth in Rathfriland. Not just flute bands but also silver, pipe and accordion bands. Lambeg drummers will also be out in force.

2 The number of organisations — apart from the lodge and the band — who use Drumlough Orange Hall on a regular basis. They are the Culturebeat musical group and the Drumlough and Ballygorian Rural Development Association, who use the hall as a community centre.

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