The Co Fermanagh and Tyrone Grand Lodges will jointly commemorate the centenary of the Battle of the Somme at a special event this weekend.
Orangemen, women and juniors from both counties will come together at a special drumhead service in Fivemiletown tomorrow (Saturday, 10th September).
The joint Act of Remembrance follows the official Somme centenary commemorations held across Fermanagh in July.
Following a parade, a religious service will be conducted by Tyrone County Chaplain Rev David Reid while Canon Mark Watson will provide the address.
The proceedings will be chaired by County Fermanagh Grand Master Stuart Brooker, with County Tyrone Grand Master Jim Emery providing a short history of the Battle of the Somme during the service.
Mr Brooker told the Herald: “We are encouraging the Orange fraternity across Fermanagh and Tyrone, and further afield, to support us in this event, which is another commemoration befitting the sacrifice of so many brave Ulstermen exactly 100 years ago”.
Brethren and sisters attending are asked to assemble at the Cavanaleck junction (near to Cavanaleck Presbyterian Church) on the Enniskillen Road from 1.30pm. The parade will move off at 2pm ahead of the service in the grounds of Fivemiletown College. The return parade should move off at 4.15pm.
Police have admised motorists intending to travel along the A4 from Ballygawley to Enniskillen should note that from 1pm, Fivemiletown will be closed to through traffic as the parade is takes place. Diversions will be in place at Ballygawley roundabout via Omagh Road, Fintona and Tempo or via Omagh, Dromore and Irvinestown. A diversion will also be located at Ballagh Road / Fintona Road at Clogher. The PSNI say that traffic travelling from Enniskillen should again consider travelling via Irvinestown and Omagh. Delays are expected until 5pm.
Meanwhile another historic event will take place at Enniskillen Castle tomorrow evening to commemorate the actions of the 36th (Ulster) Division and the 16th (Irish) Division at the Somme.
A Beating Retreat will bring together for the first time in Northern Ireland, the Irish Defence Forces Army No.1 Band and the band, bugles, pipes and drums of the Royal Irish Regiment.
Neil Armstrong, Curator-Manager of the Inniskillings Museum, says this is a highly significant event honouring the Irish sacrifice at the Somme.
“Every county on this island was touched by the war and this is a unique history-making occasion to commemorate the actions of the two Divisions through the combined musical talents of the Royal Irish Regiment and the Irish Defence Forces,” he said.
The Beating Retreat is a standing-only outdoor event with gates opening at 5pm and the performance commencing promptly at 6pm. Admission is by ticket only, priced £8 each, available from the Inniskillings Museum reception at Enniskillen Castle, through the online shop at www.inniskillingsmuseum.com or by calling the office on 6632 3142.
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