‘Everyone is welcome’ is the message ahead of Saturday’s Twelfth of July annual celebrations. Being held this year in Irvinestown, the event will be Stuart Brooker’s first as County Grandmaster and the Monea man is very confident of it being a success, even with it being part of the programme for this year’s Lady of the Lake festival.
“The towns people/locals/traders, have all displayed a great deal of goodwill towards the event. And in fact it’s fitting in very well into the overall plan for the town during the period. Although it’s a separate event, it will sit very well in the middle.”
Thousands are expected to descend on Irvinestown for the Fermanagh celebrations, the first time the town has hosted the Twelfth since 1998. The long-held involvement of southern members of the Orange fraternity, along with their counterparts from across the lakeland county, make the parade one of the largest in the country.
Approximately 90 lodges, including members of the Association of Loyal Orangewomen and a new Junior lodge from Brookeborough, will be joined by around 70 bands.
A total of 15 Fermanagh Districts – Enniskillen, Kinawley, Florencecourt, Ballinamallard, Pettigo, Magheraboy, Churchill, Maguiresbridge, Garrison, Tempo, Newtownbutler, Lisbellaw, Brookeborough, Lisnaskea and the host district, Lisnarick – will be accompanied by a wide variety of impressive local marching bands.
Mr Brooker believes the pagentry of the Twelfth of July is open to all and encouraged anyone who may have reservations to come see the celebrations first hand.
“Anyone is welcome to attend, and see the parade. Our parades are a glorious display of pageantry, and Christian witness. Yes, lots of Orange collarettes, band uniforms, banners, and flags, but all displaying our culture in a very colourful way.
“It’s a great family day, and a wonderful celebration of our tradition of culture. Those who attend, and haven’t been before, always very much enjoy the experience. We have had numerous visitors, particularly groups from the South, in recent years, and have had some very positive feedback. We encourage everyone to come and see the celebration, and enjoy a very relaxed and enjoyable day.”
All lodges and bands will move off at 12.30pm from the assembly field on the Lisnarick Road before proceeding along the approximate two-mile route through the town to the demonstration field on the Kesh Road. The religious service will commence at 2.30pm.
The main speaker will be Rev Rodney Beacom, who is Deputy County Grand Chaplain.
To read more.. Subscribe to current edition