Monday, April 03, 2006


Loyalist mural near church removed

The old mural has been removedI'd like to commend those involved in the removal of a loyalist paramilitary mural close to a Catholic church in County Antrim.

The UDA mural near the Church of Our Lady at Harryville in Ballymena was taken down after cross-community talks.

It has replaced by an Ulster Scots mural featuring symbols such as a shamrock and Red Hand of Ulster.

Tricolours were removed from the north end of Ballymena in a deal brokered by Harryville Ulster Scots Society.

Youth workers also painted out red, white and blue paint from railings around Harryville church.

Harryville priest Fr Paul Symonds was present for the official Ulster-Scots mural unveiling on Saturday.

He has been working closely with the Ulster-Scots group and he has welcomed the replacement of the UDA image for a "non-militaristic mural".

"This is very positive for the area and it is a great gesture," he said.

Geoff Calderwood, chairman of Harryville Ulster Scots Society, welcomed the Harryville scheme saying: "We think it is great for the area."

It would be easy to bemoan the fact that the murals were there so long but I think we should accept this for what it is - a step in the right direction.

I don't mind the removal of Irish tricolours as part of the deal either as I don't like to see my national flag used as some sort of territory marker because I feel it demeans it.

It's good to see both communities coming together and behaving in a mature and respectable fashion. Let's see more of this over the summer.


<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

© 2008 United Irelander.