The Balmoral Review

“100 years – 1912-20212 – the Balmoral Review”. Debate on the third Home Rule bill long preceded its formal introduction on April 11th. Winston Churchill and others travelled to Belfast in February to speak in its favour (see RIC At Celtic Park) and on April 9th (Easter Tuesday) 100,000 unionists rallied in Balmoral show grounds for review by Bonar Law, the head of the Conservative party – here is a postcard of the Wicklow contingent. (For more photographs, see Balmoral Review Review.) The 2012 commemoration drew about 10,000 people to Ormeau Park (Slugger).

The hoarding is in Lawnbrook Avenue, the small boards are in Conway Street, Belfast.

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Copyright © 2012 Peter Moloney

Fight To A Finish

This is the updated version of a mural seen previously in 2007. The main panels remain the same, but the apex has been changed from Orange Order flag and St Andrew’s Saltire to a ribbon read “Fight to a finish”, with shamrocks.

Drumtara, Ballymena

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Copyright © 2012 Peter Moloney

We Will Take The Matter Into Our Own Hands

This is a repainted version of the mural seen previously in 2006 – the main elements remain the same but a few Ulster Volunteers/36th (Ulster) Brigade elements have been added (as distinct from the UVF), the quote on the right has changed, and there is a dedication.

The quote is from “Sir Edward Carson, 1912” (probably 1920, 12th of July – Treason Felony | RTÉ): “We in Ulster will tolerate no Sinn Féin but we tell you this – that if, having offered you our help, you are yourselves unable to protect us from the machinations of Sinn Féin, and you won’t take our help, we will take the matter into our own hands.”

The Gareth Keys commemorated here is perhaps the same Gareth Keys who painted the yellow UVF mural in Donegall Pass, and whose death is described in this BelTel article.

Castlereagh Road, Belfast

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Copyright © 2012 Peter Moloney

Our Brave Defenders

This is the completed version of the mural earlier shown in-progress. The four main panels show the men of the 36th (Ulster) Division going over the top on the first day of the Somme (1st July 1916), the “angel of Mons” (WP), Ulster Tower (“This tower was dedicated to the glory of God. In grateful memory of the officers, non commissioned officers and men of the 36th (Ulster) Division, and of the sons of Ulster in other forces who laid down their lives in the great war, and of all their comrades in arms who, by divine grace, were spared to testify to their glorious deeds. ‘Throughout the long years of struggle …. the men of Ulster have proved how nobly they fight and die’ – 16th November 1918 King George V”), and Thiepval Memorial (“Dear men and brothers, going out/to fight for Ulster’s need/we hail you with a mighty shout/brave friends, and true in deed.//Your country holds you in renown/your names will never be dead/and some sweet angel has a crown/for each dear, manly head.”)

St Leonard’s Crescent (the old Newcastle Street).

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Copyright © 2011 Peter Moloney

Our Brave Defenders

Work-in-progress images from the new mural in memory of the dead from the 36th (Ulster) Division in St Leonard’s Crescent (the old Newcastle Street) in east Belfast.

The four main panels show the men of the 36th going over the top on the first day of the Somme (1st July 1916), the “angel of Mons” (WP), Ulster Tower (“This tower was dedicated to the glory of God. In grateful memory of the officers, non commissioned officers and men of the 36th (Ulster) Division, and of the sons of Ulster in other forces who laid down their lives in the great war, and of all their comrades in arms who, by divine grace, were spared to testify to their glorious deeds. ‘Throughout the long years of struggle …. the men of Ulster have proved how nobly they fight and die’ – 16th November 1918 King George V”), and Thiepval Memorial (“Dear men and brothers, going out/to fight for Ulster’s need/we hail you with a mighty shout/brave friends, and true in deed.//Your country holds you in renown/your names will never be dead/and some sweet angel has a crown/for each dear, manly head.”)

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Copyright © 2011 Peter Moloney

Charge From Thiepval Wood

The mural replaces one to the UVF’s Platoon 5 , A Co., and the memorial stone is dedicated to it (and not to the WWI soldiers from the 36th (Ulster) Division who died in the charge from Thiepval Wood, July 1st, 1916): “This stone is dedicated to the memory of the fallen volunteers of No. 5 platoon A company 1st Belfast battalion Ulster Volunteer Force. ‘As poppy petals gently fall/Remember us who gave our all/Not in the mud of foreign lands/Nor buried in the desert sands//In Ulster field and farm and town/Fermanagh’s lanes and Drumlin’d Down/We died that violent death should cease/And Ulstermen might live in peace’ Lest we forget.” For the side walls, see Thiepval St.

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Copyright © 2011 Peter Moloney

Only A Fool Would Fight

On May 5th, 1914, Edward Carson declared in a speech that “Only a fool would fight if there is a hope of accommodation” referring to the tensions between Unionists and the British parliament’s Home Rule bill (and not to any of the divided territories mentioned along the top – Israel Palestine, Shankill Falls, Nicosia, Baghdad, Berlin – or the dichotomies along the bottom: Security separation, perception reality, fear trust, belief.

The work is by John Johnston and Dee Craig and is one of the three 2009 pieces added by the Greater Shankill Partnership and Reimaging Communities programme on the Cupar Way “peace” line.

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Copyright © 2011 Peter Moloney

Together We Stand Alone

“Together we stand alone, we band of brothers.” The four panels show the Ulster Volunteers become soldiers of the 36th Division, leaving the north vulnerable to nationalist attack (“Deserted I Stand Alone“) but raising the Division flag in the style of the Marine Corps monument in Arlington National Cemetery (USA). (This panel takes the place of the hooded gunmen that were previously in the centre.)

Grange Drive, Ballyclare.

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Copyright © 2010 Peter Moloney