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Home Rule UVF arms cache discovered in Belfast Orange Hall

A huge UVF arms cache has been discovered in a Belfast Orange Hall.

Antique Austrian made Steyr Rifles and ammunition was discovered hidden in the Clifton Street hall at the end of last year.

The guns were part of a shipment of 25,000 rifles smuggled into Larne on board the Clyde Valley in 1914 for the then UVF during the Home Rule crisis.

They were found during a clean-up of the hall and will be placed on display.

The rifles do not require a firearm licence, because of their age and the fact ammunition is no longer available for them. Boxes of ammunition were also uncovered but taken away by the police when the find was reported.

A hall spokesman said: “It is tremendous to make this discovery in the decade of centenaries, creating a direct link to the events that occurred over 100 years ago in which the Orange Institution played an integral part.

“The weapons were found in a part of the hall that was rarely used and they were clearly not meant to be found.”

He added: “We look forward to displaying these rifles in our hall museum, they will compliment the numerous other items we have from this period in Ulster’s history.”

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