Comply With Your Country’s Demand

In September, 1914, six weeks after the Great War had begun, Edward Carson wrote to the Ulster Volunteers entreating “those who have not already responded” to “my call for Defenders of the Empire” to “enlist at once for the Ulster Division in Lord Kitchener’s Army”, fighting alongside “our fellow Britishers”: “Quit yourselves like men and comply with your country’s demand”. The impulse for the display of force shown here – two panels of hooded gunmen from the 1st East Antrim battalion of the UVF – is the other, original, motivation for the paramilitary force, which Carson describes as “to defend our citizenship in the United Kingdom” (Strachan & Nally).

For the RIR mural, see For Valour. The new panels shown here re-re-image the VC part of that previous mural.

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The Leaders Of This People Cause Them To Err

“In loving memory of Ian “Big O” Ogle. “He who paid the ultimate sacrifice should never be forgotten” 27th January 2019. Unbowed, unbroken.”

The scripture cards within the wreath of poppies in Cluan Place – where Ogle lived and was killed – are directed at the east Belfast UVF; some of its members killed Ian Ogle (BelTel) and are alleged to still be active in the area (Belfast Live | BelTel).

II Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

Isaiah 9:16 “For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed.”

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Boab Kerr

UVF Scottish Brigade Volunteer Scott “Boab” Kerr, from the Govan area of Glasgow and Sons Of The Somme FB (Fb) died in 2015 and is remembered with a plaque on the corner of Beechfield Street in east Belfast.

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Still Fighting The War

After a ten year run, the Crusaders FC mural (2010 | 2012) has been reverted (1996 D00711 | 2002 J1204) to a UVF hooded gunman mural.

For the other recent murals, see Respect, heritage, culture and Defending Ulster From Gaelic Attacks.

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Better To Die On Your Feet

This is the bonfire in Edgarstown, Portadown, a month shy of Eleventh Night, when it will be set alight. (The UVF banners will be removed before burning.) Since these images were taken on June 10th, a third “storey” has been added – see the Facebook page.

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If Our Shores Are Threatened

“If our shores are threatened/We will take up arms/To defend our loyal cause/Our culture and our heritage/Our freedoms and our laws.” Moygashel’s own (William) Wesley Somerville, a member of both the UVF and UDR, was killed by a bomb prematurely exploding as he placed it on the minibus of the Miami Showband in July of 1975. Three members of the band died, one of them Protestant, along with volunteers Somerville and Harris Boyle from Portadown (WP). “He died for Ulster” (on the plaque).

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text: Moygashel Park when injustice becomes law resistance becomes duty mid-ulster brigade
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Milltown Young Volunteers

This is a vintage board in Milltown (south Belvoir), carved and painted with the YCV/UVF emblems but with “MYV” instead of “YCV”. The band’s last on-line presence seems to be from a decade ago, playing in Rathcoole.

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Plum Position

The Cupar Way “peace” line, home to graffiti-art/wild-style writing and patronising slogans from around the world, is also home to a single Troubles-related memorial plaque, to Plum Smith (one | two) of the UVF/RHC and subsequently the PUP, which thus far has resisted the artists’ can and the tourists’ Sharpie. It is not known whether the “Plum” graffiti (and previously “RIP Plum Smith”) is by locals or by a visiting writer.

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The Past Comes Back

The “Ulster’s Finest” mural in Monkstown was remarkable for its depiction of two female volunteers, carrying Uzis, the only depiction of female loyalist volunteers (see Rolston ‘Women on the walls’ in Crime Media Culture 14.3, 2018, p. 373). It was plastered over in 1996 because the gable is next to Hollybank primary. Some of the pebbledash wore away in January/February to reveal the mural – still in good condition – beneath (Vintage_UVF).

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Bang Up To Date

The previous UVF mural in Carrington Street (Volunteering | On Your Side) was paint-bombed in October (Keep It Local) but has been quickly replaced by this computer-generated board showing the Harland & Wolff cranes, a Long Kesh watch-tower, and a hooded gunman from the UVF’s East Belfast Battalion.

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