Marchers given the go ahead

A LOCAL Orange Order has been given permission to march in Girvan and Maybole this weekend.

The Apprentice Boys of Derry Maybole Walker Club has been granted permission by South Ayrshire Council to march around both towns on Saturday, October 15.

Girvan and South Carrick councillor John McDowall confirmed to the Gazette that the march would go ahead due to their peaceful record in previous marches throughout South Ayrshire.

He said: “Given that Girvan has no recent history of this type of march, I do acknowledge that some members of our community might view the proposed march with disapproval and I do understand their concerns.

“However, the overriding consideration is the right and freedom of citizens to peacefully assemble and to hold marches, whether or not this meets with the approval of some or all of the community and that this right applies equally to all organisations irrespective of their religious or political nature.”

A police source said the force had “reservations” about the potential threat of public disorder, but given that this is the first march of its kind to take place in the town in almost 30 years there was no such grounds for objection.

Valerie Andrews, South Ayrshire Council’s head of legal and administrative services said: “Our role is to consult with Strathclyde Police, local elected members and community councils to ensure the proposed event is organised, managed and run in a way that is safe and causes minimal disruption, and follows the code of conduct. As this is the first such parade to be held in Girvan for a number of years, it will be monitored closely and any concerns may affect future events.”

The Girvan march will begin from Penkill Road at 1.30pm, marching across Victory Park to the Glendoune Estate, thereafter across Dalrymple Street, Henrietta Street, finishing at the Harbour.

At the conclusion of this parade, all marchers will travel to Maybole for the annual walk commencing at 3.30pm.