Belfast Telegraph

Band 'flouted music ban' at church

By Alan Erwin

SIX members of the Royal Black Institution knowingly breached a ban on flute bands playing music outside a Catholic church in Belfast, a court has heard.

Prosecutors claimed they were guilty of failing to comply with conditions imposed on the march.

But a defence lawyer argued that none of them could be held responsible for any flouting of the Parades Commission determination.

The organisational role lay with the Belfast Grand Black Chapter as a corporate authority rather than individuals, he submitted.

Charges were brought over the 'Black Saturday' parade in August 2012. Following previous controversy on the route, a prohibition had been placed on band tunes being played outside St Patrick's Church on Donegall Street.

Appearing at Belfast Magistrates Court were Belfast men Thomas Foster (60) of Woodvale Avenue; William Mawhinney (67) of Ainsworth Avenue; Alan McIntosh (60) of Kilcoole Park; Raymond Spiers (56) of Castlereagh Road. Alongside them were Thomas Hefferon (55) of Derrycoole Way and Brian Kerr (42) of Fairview Gardens, both in Newtownabbey.

The case continues.

Belfast Telegraph

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