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The Parades Commissionís Determination in Relation to the Drumcree Church Parade on 2 July 2000



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The Parades Commissionís Determination in relation to the Portadown District LOL No 1 (Drumcree) Church Parade on Sunday 2 July 2000

The following is the decision of the Parades Commission in relation to the Portadown District LOL No 1 parade in Portadown on Sunday, 2 July 2000.

Section 8(1) of the Public Processions (Northern Ireland) Act 1998, provides that:

"The Commission may issue a determination in respect of a proposed public procession imposing on the persons organising or taking part in it such conditions as the Commission considers necessary."

We have noted the details provided on Form 11/1 submitted on 3 June 2000 about the parade proposed by the Portadown District LOL No 1 on Sunday, 2 July 2000.

We have considered the need to issue a determination as outlined above, against the factors described in our Guidelines document.

Decision

The Commission understands that the parade in question is not the traditional Portadown District LOL No 1 Drumcree Church parade, which is notified to take place this year on 9th July.

This is a very large parade, comprising 3,500 people accompanied by three bands. While the parade as notified will not disrupt commercial life in Portadown, the parade and any required security operation will undoubtedly cause considerable disruption to the life of the community along the notified route.

Both the outward route and the return route pass sensitive interface areas. The Commission has repeatedly set out its position over the past two years about parades in Portadown. In the Drumcree context, the Portadown Districtís decision to notify a parade along the Garvaghy Road a week before its traditional church parade, and to notify a series of Ďsupportí parades to Drumcree Church in the following days, risks being interpreted as a deliberate attempt to raise tension. In the continued absence of local accommodation, the Commission cannot see how a parade could pass along either the notified outward route or the notified return route without having an adverse impact on relationships within the community and a consequent risk of public disorder.

While Portadown District LOL No 1 complied with the Code of Conduct during the annual Drumcree Church service parade last year, we are aware of several breaches of the Code by participants of parades organised in support of the Portadown District.

DETERMINATION

The Commissionís determination is that the following conditions are imposed on all persons organising or taking part in the parade organised by Portadown District LOL No 1 on Sunday 2 July 2000.

1. In respect of the outward route, the parade is prohibited from entering that part of the notified route between the junction of High Street and Woodhouse Street and the junction of Obins Street and Charles Street, or any part of that route. The parade shall process from its point of departure at Carleton Street into Church Street, Market Street and High Street to the junction of Castle Street, turning back along High Street and Market Street, before turning into West Street. From West Street it shall turn into Northway and join the Corcrain Road. It shall then process along the Corcrain Road into Charles Street, along Charles Street to the Dungannon Road Ė Moy Road roundabout, along the Dungannon Road to the Rectors Turn, Drumcree Road to Drumcree Church.

2. In respect of the return parade, the parade is prohibited from proceeding beyond Drumcree Parish Church, Drumcree Road, or entering that part of the notified route which includes the entire length of the Garvaghy Road including Parkmount and Victoria Terrace. The return parade shall, therefore, retrace the outward route as detailed above, or alternatively parade participants shall disperse no later than 2.30pm from Drumcree Parish Church.

3. In addition the following conditions are imposed:
a. When the parade is in progress there shall be no undue stoppages or delays.
b. The organiser shall arrange for the presence of an adequate number of stewards to ensure that all parade participants behave in an orderly manner.
c. The organiser shall ensure that only the three notified bands, namely the Star of David Accordion Band, the Edgarstown Accordion Band and the Mavemacullen Accordion Band shall accompany the procession.
d. The parade organiser shall ensure that all directions by police in relation to the parade are promptly obeyed.
e. The parade organiser shall ensure that these conditions are drawn to the attention of all participants including bands at the assembly point.


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