Benraw petrol bomb attack is condemned

A PETROL bomb thrown against the door of Benraw Orange Hall at the weekend caused minor scorch damage but will not affect cordial community relations in the area, the lodge secretary said this week.

Billy Maxwell, secretary of Benraw LOL 334 and chairman of the local community association, condemned the attack which police say took place sometime between Friday evening and Sunday.

A petrol bomb was thrown at the front door of the hall and an unbroken bottle containing a cloth was found nearby.

“This is an awful thing to have happened in Benraw where community relations are so good,” said Mr Maxwell. “We have very good cross-community relations and Benraw Orange Hall is used for many cross-community events. This wanton act will not stop those from continuing.”

Mr Maxwell said apart from a few incidents where grafitti was sprayed on the outside of the building, there have been no major attacks on the hall in the recent past.

“Around £60,000 has been spent on the hall in a major refurbishent project which included new lodge room, new toilets, new kitchen and new plastering, so something like this is to be abhored,” he said. “We will now be calling a special meeting to look at our security measures and considering whether they should be reviewed.”

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the Orange Lodge headquarters said, “Grand Orange Lodge condemn this attack and appeal to anyone with any information to call local police immediately.”

Police have also appealed for information and ask anyone who may have noticed any suspicious activity in the area over the course of the weekend to contact them on 0845 600 8000.

Information can also be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.