Orangemen plan for the ‘Twelfth’
Orangemen in Co Armagh traditionally meet for a single county demonstration on the Twelfth, but this year, because of the Covid pandemic restrictions, the 5,000 brethren from the 11 districts in the celebrated ‘County of the Diamond’ will gather at nine separate locations.
The nine Co Armagh demonstrations are in accordance with Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland instructions that the Twelfth be marked across Northern Ireland at a district level this year.
Portadown, the largest Co Armagh district, with 28 lodges, will pass the Twelfth resolutions at a mid-morning gathering outside Carleton Orange hall before moving to the war memorial in the town centre for an act of remembrance.
The Portadown lodges, with bands and Lambeg drums, will then parade the town to Edenderry and back to Carleton Street in a demonstration that is expected to last several hours.
The annual Drumcree parish church service will be held on Sunday morning July 11.
Loughgall district, with 22 lodges, plans an 11.30am Twelfth morning parade of the village to the demonstration field.
A short service will be held.
The Diamond outside Loughgall was the birthplace of the Orange Order in 1795.
Tandragee district, with 21 lodges, will parade on the Twelfth to the war memorial, form the traditional ring of banners, and hold an act of remembrance and wreath-laying ceremony.
Lodges and bands will then parade the main streets of the town.
In Armagh city, the 11 local lodges and bands will hold a memorial service at the Orange hall and then proceed on a parade of the city centre.
Lurgan district, with 19 lodges, plans a full Twelfth parade of the town centre, moving off from Brownlow House at noon, after a service of worship.
A session of fellowship and lodge and family reunion is planned in the grounds of Brownlow House, before a late afternoon parade of the town.
In Killylea, the district’s 12 lodges and bands, will parade the village to the demonstration field, where a service and act of remembrance will be held.
Richhill district, with five lodges, will hold a service at the village war memorial at 11.15am before embarking on a parade of all the housing estates.
A service will also be held at Richhill Presbyterian church.
Markethill district, with 12 lodges and bands, will parade the town mid-morning, and hold a memorial service before moving to the demonstration field which will be at Mowhan Road.
The return parade is scheduled for 3pm.
Netwownhamilton district, with 10 lodges several of which are located in Co Monaghan, will host the seven lodges of Keady and the four of Bessbrook in a unique South Armagh border Orange gathering.
The parade of 21 lodges and bands moves off at noon and, after a service of remembrance, the return parade is scheduled for 3pm.
* Before leaving for Newtownhamilton, Bessbrook lodges will hold their annual remembrance service at the Kingsmill massacre memorial in the village at 10.15am.
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