THE weekend Covenant parade and commemoration at Stormont was a day to remember for local man David Scott, who is the education officer with the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland.
The Rathfriland Orangeman was part of an enthusiastic team of staff and volunteers who helped bring Saturday’s event to fruition.
He said this week the event – which included a procession of up to 40,000 people - was a “humbling experience.
“Among the many memorable moments was witnessing the local representation on parade including Grallagh Unionist Flute Band, who recently celebrated their centenary, and the appropriately named Carson Memorial Pipe Band.”
Mr Scott – a member of Drumlough LOL 153 - admitted to being surprised at the huge scale of the parade that arrived at Stormont, despite having an expectation that large numbers would attend.
He said: “We kept getting messages from the city centre that many had not even left, while the head of the parade was coming along the Prince of Wales Avenue, so we knew there was a massive turnout of Loyal Orders and bands.
“We had to start the platform proceedings before everyone was in the grounds because Belfast County wanted to make sure their parade had gone along Donegall Street prior to the mass at St Patrick’s Church being due to start, and the sight of their banners leaving towards Massey Avenue was complemented by the sight of banners still entering the gates of Stormont.”
He added: “Even when the platform proceedings were over, the Districts from Fermanagh and Tyrone and the Independent Order were still arriving. It was amazing.”