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My favourite Band: Pride of the Hill, Rathfriland
THE YEAR 2003 has been a very special one
for me in terms of the ‘Marching Season’.
Previously I had not been a follower of the band scene.
I had always attended the larger parades, such as the Twelfth of July and
Black Saturday. However, apart from
a couple of feeder parades in my hometown of
I was introduced to the band
scene in an odd way. My Uncle, who
lives in Ballyduff, Co. Antrim, (and whom I would maybe only see a couple of
times a year at family ‘get-togethers’ such as the Twelfth) heard that I had
access to the internet. He came to
my home and asked could he have a print out of the latest ‘Parade list’.
He told me of the Kilcluney
Volunteers website which gave a comprehensive list of parades.
On learning how many parades my Uncle attended I asked him to take me to
a few of them. The first parade I
attended was held in Lisburn for the Pride of Knockmore’s annual band
competition. The rest is history and
I have attended more than 25 parades since.
Band parades are more than a
social event for myself. However, I
feel a huge sense of pride whilst watching this outstanding aspect of our
culture. It’s a shame that so many
people want to destroy it. At
these events, I am even more conscious and proud of my Protestant heritage and
culture. It’s clear to see at
these parades that everybody feels the same way.
We’ll be damned if we let Sinn Féin/IRA take this away from us.
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