Today 12th May 2016, the Loyalist Communities Council, of which Dalaradia is a part of, launched a Flags Protocol at Farset International Belfast, in recognition of important centenary events taking place this year in relation to the Battle of the Somme.
Our groups patron Dr Ian Adamson, introduced the launch.
We are aware that flags and emblems can be highly potent symbols of community allegiances and are important demonstrators of our Loyalist and Unionist heritage and culture.
The statement is below:
STATEMENT BY THE LOYALIST COMMUNITIES COUNCIL
Since the new year, the LCC has been consulting on the need to adopt protocols for the flying of flags, and the erection of eleventh night bonfires, in an attempt to demonstrate best practice in our communities, and mutual respect for those of differing opinion.
The LCC is aware that flags and emblems can be highly potent symbols of community allegiances and are important demonstrators of our Loyalist and Unionist heritage and culture. In recognition of the centenary of the Battle of the Somme the LCC would encourage all commemorations to be conducted in a spirit of respect, pride, and enjoyment.
The LCC would wish to prevent our national emblems being left on display in a dilapidated state and would ask that steps are taken to prevent this occurring.
Accordingly, the LCC has agreed the following protocol for the display of flags and emblems. The LCC cannot enforce this protocol but appeals for its widespread adoption, and adherence to, in Loyalist and Unionist areas:
1. The national flags of the United Kingdom and of Northern Ireland should be displayed and flown in our communities in a respectful manner, in places where they will command such respect and not be used for provocative purposes, and they should be maintained in good order.
2. In recognition and respect for the service and sacrifice of the 36th (Ulster) Division in this centenary year of the Battle of the Somme, a special commemorative Ulster Division centenary flag has been produced by the LCC. This flag, which features the emblem, and battle honours of the Ulster Division, along with the national flag, will be erected on arterial routes in our communities subject to appropriate respect being shown in the vicinity of churches, schools, and other cross-community buildings.
3. The Ulster Division flags will be erected during the month of June, 2016, in time for the 1 July centenary. They will be taken down promptly after Ulster Day, 28 September 2016.
4. With regard to the erection of eleventh night bonfires the LCC would emphasise that it has no responsibility for any bonfire site.
5. The LCC would appeal to all bonfire organisers to ensure that the sitting of bonfires, the choice of combustible material used, and the adornment of any bonfire should at all times have respect for public safety and security of home and business owners, and the safety of those attending bonfire lighting.