Community Festival & Veterans’ Parade this weekend

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A parade involving hundreds of veterans from around the world as well as a community festival are to be held in Ballymena this weekend.

Being staged this Friday and Saturday, March 13 and 14, at Ballee playing fields by the Royal Irish Veterans’ Association, the event will also celebrate the history of St Patrick’s Barracks and the 31st anniversary of the Royal Irish Rangers being granted the Freedom on the Ballymena Borough.

It is understood the Community Festival, to be held on Friday, will include a children’s funfair, military vehicle showcase, folk groups, pipe bands, marching bands, German band, and refreshments, while the Parade, to be held on Saturday will include the Royal Irish Veterans Pipe & Drums, Royal Irish Veterans Regimental Band & Bugles, Ulster Scots Agency Juvenile Pipe Band, and the UDR Memorial Corps of Drums.

The parade is due to start at 10am, departing from Trostan Avenue and heading to Ballee Playing Fields via Tardree Grove, Demense Avenue, Meeting House Lane, Castle Street, Bridge Street, Larne Road, and Queen Street.