Stoneyford meeting to hear parade proposals

The Pride of Stoneyford Flute Band are holding a public meeting in Castlerobin Orange Hall on Wednesday, February 12.

Members of the public are invited to attend and listen to details of the band’s recent proposals to the failed Haass talks in Belfast.

The band said it formulated a document aimed at solving the parading impasse in the village and this was sent to talks chairman Richard Haass and his assistant Meghan O’Sullivan.

William Robert is chairman of the Stoneyford Jubilee Committee.

He said, “I read the proposal before it was sent to Dr Haass and Mrs Sullivan.

“The proposal was a very comprehensive document and in my opinion would have solved the self-invented parading impasse in Stoneyford village.

“I said self-invented, since it was at the bequest of Sinn Fein that there was a parade dispute in the first place.

“However I can’t believe that those in the corridors of power, including our own unionist politicians, have not given the proposal the credit it deserved.”

Mr Robert said recent talks involving local public representatives had come to nothing.

“I urge a good attendance,” he said, “and hope that those attending leave the meeting with a clearer view on the genuine offer that was on the table but sadly no longer is.

“Since 2005 parading disputes and policing costs, etc in Stoneyford village have run into millions.

“The proposal that was offered would have settled the parading impasse at a fraction of what it will cost as it currently stands.

“One would have thought that those power brokers would have grabbed this proposal with both hands.”