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The Twelfth: Rapturous reception for Ligoniel lodges

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The Ligoniel lodges and their bands got a rapturous reception as the marched through Belfast on Saturday morning.

They had been put at the head of the large Orange procession as a symbol of solidarity with them by the loyal orders as a result of the Parades Commision ban on the Ardoyne return walk.

Follow the Ligoniel lodges and bands and their supporters in the attached two minute video clip, taken right through the city centre.

On Friday Orange Deputy Grand Master of Belfast Spencer Beattie had said: “The Ligoniel Lodges and their bands will be given pride of place at the front of the Belfast parade and we trust the crowds spectating will give them a warm welcome as they make their way to the field and back.”

This gesture had been made, he said, because “of the Ligoniel lodges being denied the freedom to return home along the Crumlin Road, a main arterial shared road”.

Earlier, the Orange parade was allowed to pass down the Crumlim Road, where Orangemen have been banned during their return walk later on Saturday.

Planned protests by nationalist residents groups were called off. Around 20 residents stood outside Ardoyne shops as the parade came past.

The new PSNI chief constable George Hamilton had earlier visited the area to see the large security operation in the north of the city.

“I think we are in as good a place as we can be just now,” he said.

On Friday, Mr Beattie also said: “There will be a token number of Brethren manning the Civil Rights Camp at Twaddell throughout the 12th of July.

“On the homeward parade the Ligoniel Lodges and accompanying Bands, will stop at a line of Marshals standing on the Woodvale Road.”

 

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