Lodge Life: Deadline looming for annual Orange awards

The 'Orange Buddies' claimed the Lodge Community Involvement Award at last year's prize-giving ceremony. The Banbridge-based drama group raised substantial funds for charity through their various productions
The 'Orange Buddies' claimed the Lodge Community Involvement Award at last year's prize-giving ceremony. The Banbridge-based drama group raised substantial funds for charity through their various productions

The Orange Institution is encouraging its members, lodges, and bands to submit their nomination for this year’s Orange Community Awards, ahead of next week’s deadline.

The annual prize-giving ceremony will take place later this month at the Island Arts Centre in Lisburn on Friday March 31.

Lodges and individuals are reminded the deadline for submissions to the various categories is Friday March 10.

This year’s categories are as follows:

• Best New Banner

• Individual Contribution to Community Involvement

• Lodge Community Involvement

• Sporting Achievement Award

• Youth Development Award

• Band of the Year Award

• Individual Musician’s Award

The Grand Master’s Award will once again be chosen by the Grand Master of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland, Edward Stevenson.

In recent years, recipients of the prize have included Olympic rower Alan Campbell, broadcaster Walter Love, businessman William Wright, and football manager David Jeffrey.

Chief executive of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland, Iain Carlisle, said: “The Community Awards provide a unique opportunity to highlight and reflect upon the outstanding commitment which many members of the Institution give to their lodges and communities, and over the years hundreds have been recognised.

“The aim of the awards is to recognise and reward excellence, and we are delighted to be returning to Lisburn for what promises to be another memorable evening, as we once again acclaim individuals and lodges for their sterling, and often publicly unseen, work and activities throughout the year.”

He added: “With the deadline for nominations in early March, we would encourage all members and lodges to get involved in this wonderful annual event.”

A full programme of entertainment on the evening will include Ballylone Flute Band, Markethill Highland Dancers and gospel choir, Men in Black.

Tickets, priced £10, can be obtained by contacting the Arts Centre box office on 028 9250 9254, or alternatively via its website.

Application forms for the various categories are currently available for download via the Grand Lodge website at www.grandorangelodge.co.uk.

They can also be requested by emailing communityawards2016@goli.org.uk or by telephone on 028 9070 1122.