Orange procession to see out Northern Ireland Centenary year

A major Orange parade has been organised in Markethill for 29 December to see out the centenary year of Northern Ireland.

Friday, 24th December 2021, 8:00 am

The imposingly named ‘Grand Centennial Procession’ is an initiative of the Markethill District Orange Lodge No.10, to provide a year end occasion that is “truly worthy of the centenary of Northern Ireland”.

A District spokesperson said the motivation behind the events were, that “a range of factors have prevented the true celebrations there should have been this year for the centenary of ‘Our Wee Country’, but Markethill District 10 are determined to ensure that the milestone gets a proper marking.”

The spokesman said that all their own lodges will be out “in numbers”, with over 500 members in the area.

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“Alongside them will be the many well known local marching bands, and as always given its stronghold in the area, the lambeg drum will be prominently on display.  

 “Despite being just after Christmas, the festive theme will be continued, with free hot Chocolate distributed to help keep out the winter chills, and a special guest ‘Santa in a Sash’ doing the rounds, with centenary themed goodie bags for all good girls and boys - chocolate and goodie bags on a first-come first-served basis.

“The district’s musicians have promised a very much Christmas theme in music and attire, and spectators are sure to see an odd Santy beating a drum, or squeezing an accordion.”

The event will begin at 7.30pm, traversing all of the main streets before lighting a celebratory beacon for NI’s Centenary in the Town Square. There will be no speeches, as it is intended to be a family, fun occasion.

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