Continuing Conflicts

The war memorial garden in City Way (Sandy Row) commemorates those from the Great War, World War II, and “Continuing Conflicts” which includes the “Troubles”. There is also a fourth, smaller, stone, with John Maxwell Edmonds’s memorial epitaph.

“The Great War 1914-1918: In memory of the fallen”, with John McCrae’s poem ‘In Flanders Fields‘.
“Second World War 1939-1945: Freedom is the sure possession of those have the courage to defend it. Their ideal is our legacy. Their sacrifice is our inspiration.”
“Continuing Conflicts: We remember those who have given their lives. The wounded and those who serve in continued conflicts around the world.”

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Nihil Timeo

The Royal Air Force was established on April 1st, 1918 and in 1925 the 502 (Ulster) Squadron was formed at Aldergrove as a Special Reserve squadron (and later as an Royal Auxiliary Air Force squadron). The squadron flew bombing raids against enemy submarines and ships during the second World War, from a succession of bases, including Limavady, Norfolk, Cornwall, and Stornoway (WP). (The plane depicted is perhaps a Halifax from later in the war. The officer depicted is perhaps Robert Oxland, the first commanding officer.) The mural above, in Main Road, Glynn, was unveiled on August 20th, 2018 (Roy Beggs) to commemorate the Force’s 100th anniversary.

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Belfast 1941

This is only one of about 20 similar plaques erected in 2016 by Belfast City council to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the blitz of Belfast in 1941. (For images of others, see The Second World War In NI.) This is the one in Ohio Street, on the side of the Woodvale Community Centre. During the blitz, more than 900 people died, 1,500 people were injured, and half of the houses in Belfast were destroyed (WP).

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Welcome To The Shankill Road

This is the new ‘Welcome To The Shankill (Road)’ mural in Gardiner Street, which replaces the one that had been there since (at least) 2009 (see Welcome To The Shankill).
The mural is a version of the old Beverley Street ‘welcome’ mural (by Blaze FX), with the same four panels (parades/bonfire, blitz, sports, murals) and the same three hands. But instead of “Proud, Defiant, Welcoming” we now have “Proud, Resilient, Welcoming”. (I Am Not Resilient in the lower Shankill complains that the word is used to justify neglect and/or maltreatment.)
It escaped no one’s notice that, although the number of languages expressing a greeting is now much greater than the original ten, Irish is not included among them. Also Ulstèr Scots. (Also French, for some reason. Polish is included – “Witamy”). (See similarly “No Irish” in the lower Shankill estate but also All Flags Are Welcome in Divis, which omitted the Union Flag.)
The claim that the Shankill area dates back to AD 455 is used in The Original Belfast. The claim was made by the Greater Shankill Partnership.
Despite the appearance of bricks, the main panel is not in fact a mural but a board.
Held over from the old mural are the two strips of ‘famous faces’ on the left and right (see below).
Images of the July 10th launch from sponsors Alternatives.
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Blair “Paddy” Mayne

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Robert Blair “Paddy” Mayne was a rugby player, boxer, golfer, and solicitor, and in WWII a commando and one of the first members of the SAS (Special Air Service), participating in raids behind enemy lines in Egypt and Libya (depicted in the board above), and later, as SAS commander, in France, Belgium and other countries. His many decorations, including the DSO (four times) and French Croix De Guerre and Legion D’Honneur, are pictured below. His WP page includes an explanation of the ribbon bars.
Mayne was born in Newtownards and returned there at the end of the war. His statue stands in the town’s Conway Square and this board can be found in Queen Street.
Painted by muraltec.
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