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University lodge unveils bannerette on Ulster Day

By Nevin farrell

Published 28/09/2015

Worshipful Master of LOL1984 Matthew Gray and Chaplin of LOL 1984 Neil Harrison at the Ulster Day commemoration yesterday
Worshipful Master of LOL1984 Matthew Gray and Chaplin of LOL 1984 Neil Harrison at the Ulster Day commemoration yesterday

A ceremony has taken place beside the tomb of one of unionism's leading historic figures - Lord Carson.

To mark Ulster Day yesterday, a bannerette dedication service was held at St Anne's Cathedral in Belfast.

Ulster Covenant Memorial LOL 1984 - an Orange lodge comprised of students, graduates and staff members of the Ulster University who are also members of the Orange Institution - hosted the event.

The date has particular relevance to the lodge given that it was founded on the centenary of the signing of the Ulster Covenant, three years ago, and subsequently named after the key event in unionist history.

A copy of the Ulster Covenant features prominently on the new bannerette, which is complemented by the lodge's logo alongside images of Orange lilies and red poppies.

The bannerette was formally dedicated next to the tomb of former unionist leader, Lord Carson, which is located within the cathedral.

Matthew Gray, Worshipful Master of LOL 1984, said the occasion was a "special and momentous day" for lodge members.

He said: "The fundraising and development of this bannerette has been a large undertaking by the lodge given that we were only constituted in 2012, and we greatly appreciate the support we have received in making this a very poignant event. It was particularly fitting the dedication ceremony took place on the anniversary of our lodge's formation and in doing so marked the significance of Ulster Day.

"It was also symbolic St Anne's Cathedral should host the event given its proximity to the university's soon-to-be expanded Belfast campus, and we are indebted to Rev Alan McCann for officiating."

Following the religious service, a short parade was held around the Cathedral Quarter.

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