Billy Hanna

“William ‘Billy’ Hanna” murdered 21/6/1978. We will remember. Pride Of Ardoyne FB.” On the 40th anniversary of his death, a memorial plaque and cross were mounted at the top of Ardoyne Road to Billy Hanna, founder member of the Pride Of Ardoyne. The word “murdered” is notable. Hanna was shot in an SAS ambush of a PIRA attempt to bomb the Ballysillan post office depot; it is alleged that the SAS snipers opened fire without warning and discharged 170 rounds (An Phoblacht). An alternative interpretation of the event might put the focus instead on Hanna being caught in the crossfire (BBC-NI) or mistaken for an IRA member (Sutton).

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They Said We’d Never Last

Ronnie’s hardware shop in east Belfast, vacant for many years and the site of Our Brave Defenders, was finally torn down last year and a pocket park created with murals commemorating east Belfast volunteers who died in the Great War and the UVF Regimental Band (tw), this year celebrating its 50 anniversary (video of the launch). See previously: 40th anniversary banner at the same spot (Belvoir Bar).
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X06573 X06574 X06571 X06572 St Leonard’s Cr/old Newcastle St

In The Footsteps Of Heroes

The 8th battalion of the RIR was drawn from east Belfast’s Ulster Volunteers in 1914. The board shown above, on the practice hall of Rising Sons Flute Band (Fb), shows the Thiepval Memorial to the missing of the Somme – the heroes that in whose footsteps the band claim to march.
The board replaces the tarp saying “Loyalists welcome“.
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Welcome To The Jungle

Dee Stitt resigned last week as chair of Charter NI citing the strain on his family caused by negative media attention (BBC-NI | Irish News). At the end of 2016, Stitt was criticised for remarks describing his North Down Defenders (tw | Fb) as the “homeland security” of the area and describing working-class estates as “jungles” in which there is always a “big guy” (Guardian video 8 min mark ff.| BelTel | ITV) . The mural above does not directly indicate ties to the UDA/UFF, except for the red fist. For a more explicit NDD board further down the estate, with UDA, UFF, UYM, and LPA flags, see North Down Defenders.
For the recent tension between UDA factions in north Down, see Ulster Defence Unions.
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Ulster First Flute

This vintage piece is next to Linfield Gardens, off Sandy Row. (For the mural all the way back in 1997, see M01330.) Ulster First Flute (Fb) shares the emblem of the other UFF – the Ulster Freedom Fighters – a red first (with or without the drops of blood). See also: Gareth ‘Big Henry’ Morrison on Loyalist Avenue.
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Pride Of Ballymacash

The Pride Of Ballymacash flute band, formed in 2011 from the Pride Of Prince William (bottom left) and Ballymacash Young Conquerors (bottom right), uses the emblem of the 36th (Ulster) Division, in the centre of the mural. In the background on the left is the Thiepval Memorial and, on the right, the UDR memorial statue in Market Square, Lisburn. To the left (in the second image) is a UDA plaque “In memory of fallen comrades Ballymacash B coy D battaltion, South Belfast Brigade. Quis separabit.” For a close-up of the memorial on the ground, see Death & Life.
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Death & Life

The skull-and-crossbones is the emblem of the Ballymacash Young Conquerors, which merged with the Pride Of Prince William in 2011 to form the Pride Of Ballymacash. (Fb)  The symbol is a potent one, however, and still used by the new band in addition to its own. In the mural in its memorial garden, it is surrounded by poppies, thistles, and orange lilies. If you know the name of the young man in the memorial display (second image), please comment/get in touch.
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Loyalist Randalstown

“This plaque was presented by the officers and members of the Randalstown Sons Of Ulster flute band on Saturday 17th April 1999 in memory of all the loyalist people of Ulster who have suffered at the hands of the enemies of our land.” All of the plaque, the arch, the ground painting, and the 36th Division board are sponsored by the Randalstown Sons Of Ulster flute band (tw). Neillsbrook Road and Blackthorn Way, Randalstown.
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Cloughfern Young Conquerors

The Cloughfern Young Conquerors (a UDA flute band) (Fb) was founded in 1973 in Rathfern – the same year as the UFF. Knockenagh Ave.
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Welcome To Loyalist Eden

King William’s True Blues flute band from Eden Village (outside Carrickfergus) amalgamated with the South East Antrim Defenders. That group disbanded in 2007 but was re-established in 2010.

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