VIDEO: Crowds turn out in Ballyclare for Royal Black County Antrim demonstration

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It was an afternoon of sunshine and showers in Ballyclare for the Co Antrim Royal Black Institution demonstration.

Around 3,000 members from 79 preceptories took part in the parade from the districts of Larne, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Antrim, Lisburn and the host district of Ballyclare, along with more than 70 bands.

The demonstration was last held in Ballyclare in 2008 and once again the crowds turned out in their thousands to line the streets for the ‘last Saturday’ event.

The Ballyclare District Master this year is local businessman William John Strange, whose own preceptory - Tildarg RBP 1111 - led the procession.

Mr Strange said:, ‘It is an honour, privilege and pleasure that my year as Worshipful District Master of Ballyclare District culminated in my leading the county demonstration parade around my home town.”

He spoke of the many months of planning for the event and paid tribute to all the Sir Knights who helped him in the preparation.

“We are also grateful for the generous help and advice from Newtownabbey Borough Council as well as the PSNI, St. John’s Ambulance and Translink.

“ I am also pleased that in conjunction with the officers and brethren of Sixmilewater Loyal Orange District Lodge No 10 that we have been able to remember that this year is the centenary of the outbreak of WWI and we have paid homage to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice with new symbols on the Orange District Arch,” Mr Strange added.

The parade made its way through the town from Rashee Road, Erskine Park, North End, The Square, Main Street and Mill Road to Sixmilewater Park where a religious service was held.

The service of worship was conducted by Rev Ian McClean, with the Sovereign Grand Master, Millar Farr, the principal speaker.


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