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Urgent review needed of Antrim Council Bonfire procedure

22 June, 2009

Sinn Féin Antrim Borough Councillor Anne Marie Logue has stated that there needs to be an urgent review of Antrim borough councils policy and procedure surrounding funding for 12th of July bonfires 

Speaking today Ms Logue said:

“The policies and procedures adopted and utilised by Antrim Council in relation to 12th of July bonfires are in need of serious review.

“ Evidence from last year highlights that funding is being delivered to some groups who are placing sectarian symbols, Irish flags and effigies of the nationalist tradition on to their bonfires yet they continue to receive council monies because Antrim Borough Council refuses to make conditional funding on the basis of damage being done to good relations. 

“On top of this the sanctions for pollution, through the burning of tyres, are completely inadequate. Groups still receive a proportion of funding if they burn tyres on their bonfires regardless, which clearly does not encourage the ending of this practice.

“Last weeks council agenda dealing with this matter did not include these issues as a major topic, instead  Council conveniently released  backdated minutes of this years funding arrangements under the title of ‘other information’.

“Given the financial spend of £30,000 of rate payers money on the 12th of July bonfires and the manner in which some funded groups behaved last year an urgent and immediate review into the criteria and procedure of funding for Bonfires is required."

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