Newry legion flag removal a ‘sad state of affairs’

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The removal of Royal British Legion flags at a Newry church has been branded “a sad state of affairs” by a councillor.

It was reported on Friday that the flags in St Mary’s Church of Ireland in Newry had been replaced with white flags bearing a heart emblem.

The Belfast Telegraph quoted Rev Kingsley Sutton as saying in an update to his parish that while the legion does much good, and though the move may be “very hurtful” to some, he wanted to “declare a break from the past”. He could not be reached last night.

Newry, Mourne and Down councillor Harold McKee (a Presbyterian himself) said: “To me it’s a bit sad; a sad state of affairs... I don’t think that’s the way to make a clean cut, by removing memorials.

“Where do you stop at? You may have removed flags but, I don’t know, are there going to be no more Remembrance Sundays?”