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Lord Mayor looking forward to Pipe Band Tattoo

John Hooks

Reporter:

John Hooks

Email:

john.hooks@ulstergazette.co.uk

THE new Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough, Julie Flaherty has spoke of her excitement at being given the honour of being the Chieftain of the Gatherin’ at the upcoming Pipe Band Tattoo in Markethill.

On Wednesday June 27 (7.30pm) in the town’s Square a pipe band tattoo will take place to raise money for the Drew Nelson Legacy Project.

The tattoo follows on from a similar event held in Markethill four years ago in the run-up to the Twelfth being held in the town.

This year's event will involve six leading pipe bands, world champion Drum Majors and the renowned Markethill Ulster-Scots Dancers.

The bands taking part are Marlacoo, Whitewater, Clontibret, Joseph Forde Memorial, Altnaveigh and Syerla. Also in attendance will be World Champion Drum Majors, James Kennedy and Jason Price.

Despite being only a matter of weeks into the role of Lord Mayor it will be councillor Flaherty’s second opportunity to be Chieftain at a pipe band event.

She also had the honour at the Craigavon & District Pipe Band and Drum Major Championships at Lurgan Park on June 9.

“The championships in Lurgan were really very special,” said the Lord Mayor.

“I have a lot of friends in Markethill and I am really looking forward to next Wednesday, it promises to be agreat occasion and I am certainly looking forward to it.”

A District spokesman said: "It's four years since our  first Tattoo which was held as part of the Markethill Twelfth celebrations.

 "Over 3,500 people attended the Tattoo which we were delighted with. It was stepping a little into the unknown for us but the event could not have passed off any better - it is still talked about in the area.

 "District officers have been approached over the years on many occasions by members of public requesting it be held again and now we have decided the time is right."

 This year's event is being held as part of Markethill District's fundraising activities for the Drew Nelson Legacy Project and a collection will be taken on the night.

The Orange Institution intends to majorly expand its current student provision in the university area of Belfast, with the ultimate aim of creating a standalone ‘Drew Nelson Centre’ providing meeting space and accommodation for student members.

 It is also envisaged a designated development officer will provide career advice and guidance to young people across Northern Ireland and the border counties.

Mr Nelson, 60, died in 2016 after a short battle with cancer. The Dromore solicitor served as Grand Secretary of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland for 12 years, first elected in December 2004.

Regarded as a hugely influential figure within the Order and the genesis of its numerous community development activities, MrNelson was also a huge advocate for younger members; establishing a third-level leadership course, as well as actively supporting the respective Orange societies at local universities.

Meanwhile Mullabrack LOL 1406 are holding their annual Tractor Run on Sat 23 June leaving the Orange Hall at 2pm. All are welcome with the proceeds also going to the DNLP.

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