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Enniskillen ‘closed down’ by Loyalist parade

11 August, 2008

Enniskillen 'closed down' by Loyalist parade

Fermanagh Councillor Domhnall Ó Cobhthaigh has said that Enniskillen was closed for almost all of Saturday because of Loyalist band parades.

Mr Domhnall Ó Cobhthaigh said:

"Enniskillen was virtually a no-go area for all of Saturday because of the day long parading by bands from the Loyal Orders. Many local people have said that they felt like prisoners in the town.

"It was difficult for local people to get into town to do their shopping on one of the town's busiest shopping days. It was also very detrimental to shoppers coming across the border from the south, which have become a very important market for local retailers.

"There is also a huge impact on the local tourism industry. Any tourist wanting to visit the town would have been totally frustrated.

"There was an impact right across the county with Loyalists getting off buses just to parade through small villages both to and from the main demonstration in Enniskillen. The organisers have to ask themselves what is the benefit to this type of excessive triumphalist coat trailing

Mr Ó Cobhthaigh, is also Chairperson of the Fermanagh District Policing Partnership, also criticised the PSNI handling of the band parades. He added:

"There appeared to be no contingency plan in place to keep traffic moving in and out of the town. These marching bands were allowed to behave as if they owned the town and far from being of any great benefit this would have been bad for local retailers and our image.

"Sinn Fein will be raising these concerns with the local PSNI commander and at the next DPP meetings." ENDS

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