New Look

There is a fresh coat of paint and all-new lettering on this UDA mural in Rathcoole but the ensignia and hooded gunmen remain the same. Compare to the 2013 image in Rathcoole UFF.

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The Longest Reign

“I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service.” said Princess Elizabeth on her 21st birthday on April 21st, 1947, five years before she became queen. As the info board to the right describes, “In 2015, she became the longest reigning monarch in British history, surpassing her great-great grandmother, Queen Victoria. In 2016, she became the oldest reigning monarch in the world! … In 2017 Her Majesty and her loyal consort Prince Philip marked their 70th wedding anniversary – the longest royal marriage in British history.”

“This artwork was commissioned by Queens Park Women’s Group to celebrate the platinum anniversary of the reign of our beloved monarch Queen Elizabeth II and was officially opened by Mr David McCorkell KStJ, Her Majesty’s lord-lieutenant for County Antrim on 25th August 2022.”

The wide shots show two other murals above and below this one; above is How Nobly They Fight And Die, below is South East Antrim Remembers.

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The Enemies Of Ulster

Mark Quail, of the UVF, was “murdered by the enemies of Ulster” – that is, shot by the UDA – at his Rathcoole home on November 1st, 2000. His was the fourth death in four days (after David Greer, Bertie Rice, Tommy English) (Irish Times) as the UVF-UDA feud that began in the Shankill with the infamous “loyalist day of culture” in August 2000 spread to north Belfast and Newtownabbey (though the BBC says they are unrelated). There were also attacks in east Belfast (BelTel) before the feud ended in mid-December (BBC | Guardian).

See also Jackie Coulter (and Bobby Mahood) and Sam Rockett “Murdered By Cowards”.

This is a repainted mural; for the previous version see Marky Quail.

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Ulster Welcomes Her King & Queen

… to the state opening of the first parliament of Northern Ireland – with new prime minister James Craig – at Belfast City Hall on June 22nd, 1921. The monarchs in question are King George V and Queen Mary. Pathé has video of the royal arrival and travel to City Hall. In his speech, George appealed “to all Irishmen to pause, to stretch out the hand of forbearance and conciliation, to forgive and to forget, and to join in making for the land which they love a new era of peace, contentment, and goodwill.”

For the coat of arms, see previously The Lion And The Elk. It is not clear whom the twelve framed portraits depict. The six gentlemen in the background are the members of the original Executive Committee, which served as a cabinet to the Commons and Senate – for a full list, with offices, and the original photograph, see WP. Carson’s statue at the entrance to Stormont is on the left. The photograph of spectators at the parade (on the far left) can be seen in this News Letter article. The photograph of the royals in their carriage can be seen here and of the King inspecting the guard here.

The project was undertaken by Rathcoole Friends of the Somme (Fb), with support from the Housing Executive’s Community Cohesion unit.

See also Floreat Ultona in south Belfast.

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Welcome To Our Homeland

Here are two Sons Of KAI tarps in “the C-double-O” (Rathcoole), celebrating fifty years of the flute band. For the controversy over the name (and date of formation) see The Famous.

In the background of one of the wide shots can be seen (the latest version of) the Marky Quail mural.

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Four F*cks Given

Derry’s Bogside is at odds with everyone, it seems: above, the English Queen and her platinum jubilee, below, NATO, and … Creggan!

Lasair Dhearg’s take on the jubilee is entitled 70 Years A Parasite.

The anti-NATO placard has a small hammer-and-sickle at the bottom.

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The Famous

Sons Of KAI flute band (ig) re-formed in 2006 (youtube | Coin Talk) but here claims as its origin date “1972” which is when the “tartan” gang (History Ireland) ‘Rathcoole KAI’ was formed.

One of the founders claims that the gang was named after a (not-famous) Danish soccer player Kai Johansen (WP), who played for Rangers from 1965-1970 (IWM) but then (BelTel) and now (Irish News | Slugger) “KAI” is understood to stand for “Kill All Irish”.

A 1982 image of the Rathcoole KAI “red devils” mural can be seen in the Ciaran McGowan collection at IWM.

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On The Occasion Of Her Platinum Jubilee

“The people of Rathcoole send their sincere and heartfelt congratulations to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on the historic occasion of Her Platinum Jubilee.” The Monday at the end of May is usually a bank holiday in the UK, but this year it is being postponed until the end of the week and combined with an additional one to create a four-day weekend beginning this Thursday in celebration of the 70th (“platinum”) anniversary of the accession of Elizabeth on February 6th, 1952 (the coronation was on June 2nd, 1953).

The mural centrally shows an official portrait from 1992, wearing the orders of George VI and George V; the four medallions show Elizabeth at her birth, her coronation, “trooping the colour” on her birthday, and 70th wedding anniversary in 2017.

With support from RATH (Rathcoole Achieving, Transforming, Helping each other) and Dalaradia (web). For another Dalaradia board in Rathcoole, see Kingdom Of The Pretani ; for a Cú Chulainn version of the Dalaradia board, see Defending Ulster From Gaelic Attacks.

See previously: Rathcoole UDA celebrate the golden jubilee.

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NI Protocol, I Am Your Father

Darth Vader in a bowler and collarette on a Rathcoole porch demanding “equal rights” for “British citizens” and protesting the NI Protocol (“No Irish Sea border”), which is result of Brexit. Lord Vader is accompanied by more traditional icons of loyalism: King William III and Eddie The Trooper (who has his own Visual History page).

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No Union Without “NI”

Celebrations of the centenary of the creation of Northern Ireland have been dampened by the fall-out from Brexit and the NI Protocol, the on-going coronavirus restrictions (and the leadership races in both the DUP and UUP). This Rathcoole house a flag to mark the centenary (the coat of arms of NI on a St Patrick’s Saltire) and stickers decrying the Protocol (“Northern Ireland unionists against NI Protocol”) and thanking the NHS.

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