Council to Stem Bigot Parades 2009-08-19Posted by clype in Glasgow, Intolerance, Scotland.
Tags: Bigot, Orange order, Protestant
The number of Orange parades in Glasgow could be cut by up to 90 per cent amid council concerns over policing costs and disruption to city streets, it emerged today.
City councillors are to discuss proposals which could see a major cut in all processions and marches through the city.
Representatives of the Protestant loyal orders will be consulted as organisers of an estimated 250 annual parades.
Talks will take place as the local authority awaits the publication of a report by Strathclyde Police outlining the cost of covering the events.
It emerged earlier this month that the bill for three Orange Order events in July came to almost £1million.
Council deputy leader James Coleman said today city businesses could no longer afford the disruption caused by such a large volume of parades.
Mr Coleman said: ‘
‘The volume of parades is certainly as issue.
‘It might have been acceptable decades ago but Glasgow is a different place now.
‘For businesses and the retail sector – which is the second biggest in the UK – we can’t afford the disruption anymore.
‘It’s a matter of getting a democratic balance.’
It is understood that the number of Protestant loyal order processions could be reduced to around 20 and big events, such as next year’s July ‘Orange Order Boyne Celebrations parade’, could be diverted away from the city centre.
Mr.Ian Wilson, grand master of ‘The Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland’, said the organisation would discuss the proposals with the council but would “dig its heels in” to maintain the larger summer events.
Mr Wilson, who was last year responsible for 183 Orange parades in Glasgow, said the events benefited the city by bringing a number of businesses and organisations who book into local hotels and restaurants.
Many of the smaller parades take place on a Sunday and do not require heavy policing, he said.
Mr Wilson said on the police cost:
‘The police are not required to steward our parades — they are there for traffic management and public disorder.
‘We have said before that the police numbers are a bit high.
‘It’s a clear libertarianism issue — you cannot say you’ve got a right to parade on the streets and then say “look what it’s costing”‘.
Mr Wilson added:
‘It’s a challenge for us — it’s easy for me to say that we’ve been doing this for years but we’ve got to take into consideration the increased volume of traffic on the streets and so on.’
Councils were given greater control over marches and parades following a 2005 review by former Strathclyde Police chief constable Sir John Orr.
Longer notice periods were introduced and authorities were granted the ability to ban proposed marches.
‘We’ve had good discussions with the Orange Order over the years but I think we need to go further now and have more detailed discussions’.
‘The Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland’ said it sought a meeting with the council in June with the aim of setting up a working party to look at the issue of parades.
- CLIPPED FROM: ‘Glasgow Council ponders plan to cut Orange parades by 90%‘, The Daily Record, 2009-08-19