Get Ready To Make Your Move

Here are two signs of protests at the NI Protocol along with the third version of graffiti complaining about parking spaces being taken by people working at the Boucher Road complexes. The original version (in 2020) threatened that “your car will be burnt” (Street View). It’s not clear whether it’s new construction or existing businesses that are the target, though the Boucher Road area has been busy, with a refit of B&Q (BelTel) and new Lidl being built next to the Olympia (BelTel) (not to mention the stage for the Ed Sheeran concerts (Newsletter)).

“Loyalist Village says NO! to an Irish Sea border”, “Loyalist Village will never accept a border in the Irish Sea.”

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An Attitude Of Revolt

The Tommy Roberts mural at the top of Westland Street, Derry, has been expanded, with a new central image – which now includes a portrait of Stevie Mallon alongside Roberts, against a background of Free Derry Corner – and three additional plaques.

Both quotes (“Life springs from death, and from the graves of dead patriot men and women spring living nations.” and “As long as Ireland is unfree the only honourable attitude for Irishmen and Irishwomen is an attitude of revolt.” are from Patrick Pearse. The first quote was also used on a Gibraltar 3 mural in Belfast and an INLA mural in Strabane in 1990; the latter was used in a Belfast in the 1980s.

“In proud and loving memory of Tommy Roberts, former IRA volunteer, former POW blanketman, died 8th June 2017 aged 78. His courage and dedication will never be forgotten. As long as Ireland is unfree the only honourable attitude for Irishmen and Irishwomen is an attitude of revolt.”

“In proud and loving memory of Stevie Mellon, former IRA volunteer, former internee, former GAA referee, died 1st August 2018, aged 65 years. His courage and dedication will never be forgotten. Lay him away on the hillside with the brave and the bold.”

“In proud and loving memory of Veronica Taylor, a proud socialist republican. Born11th June 1943, died 16th December 2019, aged 76 years. Her tireless dedication to the republican struggle will never be forgotten. “The only people worthy of freedom are those who are prepared to go out and fight for it every day and die if necessary.””

“In proud and loving memory of Ruairí (Roddy) Carlin, former IRA volunteer, former POW, died 23rd March 2021. A brave son of Ireland who fought for his country against continued British oppression and injustice, an uncompromised republican committed to the reunification of Ireland.”

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Bread For All And Roses Too

“A woman’s place is in her union! We fight for bread but we fight for roses, too. Join the IWW [Industrial Workers Of The World (web)] OneBigUnion.ie.” The titular phrase comes from a 1910 speech by American suffragist Helen Todd, who later explained that votes for women would mean “helping forward the time when life’s Bread, which is home, shelter and security, and the Roses of life, music, education, nature and books, shall be the heritage of every child that is born in the country” (American Magazine LXXII p. 611)

Rossville Street, Derry

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Times Tables

Southcity Resource & Development Centre (Fb) provides (among many other services) a ‘homework club’ on Tuesday afternoons. They have put up the times tables in four locations around the Village that will encourage kids walking to and from school to practice their maths. The set shown here is in Roden Street; the others are in Lemberg Street, Nubia Street, and Tavanagh Street – below this UVF hooded gunman.

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Friendship Across The Water

Walker Clubs – one of the associated clubs of the Apprentice Boys – are named for George Walker, joint Governor of Derry (with Lundy) during the siege, who died at the Boyne, on July 1st/12th, 1690 while going to the aid of the Duke Of Schomberg. In the centre is the crest of Londonderry: “Vita, veritas, victoria“.

This board in Larne’s ‘Factory’ districts shows, (clockwise from bottom left): the apprentice boys shutting the gates, the breaking of the boom to relieve the siege, Walker (who was also an Anglican priest) inciting the apprentice boys to shut the gates with a cry of “No surrender”, and, clasped hands signifying the connection between Larne Walker Club (Fb) and Maybole Walker Club in South Ayrshire, Scotland. A list of all the Walker Clubs can be found at ABOD.

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Che’s Afterlife

Henri Cartier-Bresson said of Che Guevara’s eyes that they “glow; they coax, entice and mesmerize.” (WaPo), and (in a special feature ‘This Is Castro’s Cuba Seen Face To Face‘ that he shot for Life magazine) described Che as “an impetuous man with burning eyes and profound intelligence who seems born to make revolution”. The descriptions seem to fit the iconic “Guerrillero Heroico” photo by Alberto Korda, which Jim Fitzpatrick took as the basis for his two-tone poster version, but raised the eyes even more (WP).

This small Che board is in the alley between Ross Road and the Falls Road, near You’re Never Alone, over the back door to someone’s yard. It dates back to at least 2016.

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The Joy Of Our Hearts

The Newington tribute to Bobby Sands and the other deceased hunger strikers of the 1970s and 80s (see previously: Mol An Óige Agus Tiocfaidh Sí) has been augmented with four plaques to republicans from the area who died in the Troubles: (l-r) Martin McDonagh, Rosemary Bleakley, Colm Mulgrew, and Sean ‘Maxi’ McIvenna.

Unbeknowst to her parents (Lost Lives), Bleakley had joined Cumann Na mBan at 18 and was four days short of her nineteenth birthday when she and McDonagh were killed in a premature bomb explosion in the North Street arcade (Victor Patterson image of the blast), along with civilians Ian Gallagher and Mary Dornan (Sutton); 20 others were injured (Fortnight). Bleakley was not buried in the republican plot (in Milltown) but coincidentally in the plot adjacent to Dornan (BBC).

Bleakley was portrayed in the old New Lodge Volunteers mural.

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You’re Never Alone

“Be smart, don’t start” – taking drugs, that is. This is a recent mural on the Falls Road, Belfast, with nine panels that discourage youth from taking drugs, alternately by reminding them of their dangers (including death – “Drugs can thrill but they also kill.” “I’m dying to meet you.” “If you dance with the devil you remain in hell.” “Don’t let drugs ruin something beautiful.” “Don’t get trapped by drugs.”) and providing support in persevering through dark times (“There is always light beyond the darkness.”
“We all have a choice in life.” “Hugs not drugs.” “Always remember you’re never alone.” “Try to be leader not a follower.”)

With support from Belfast City Council, Divis Youth Project, Greater Falls Neighbourhood Partnership, Falls Partnership Initiative (Falls Residents).

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Coming Back To Drumahoe

Jim Donaghy was born in the Bonds area of the Waterside but when he joined the 10th (Derry) Battalion his family was living in Drumahoe. It was to there that he returned after seeing action at The Battle Of Albert in 1916, as well as the Battle of Messines, the Battle of Langemarck, the Cambrai Operations, and the Capture Of Bourlon Wood (Reserves & Cadets | Three Cheers For The Derrys). 

“”I arrived in Larne on the ferry from Scotland and before I caught the train to Londonderry, I sent a telegram to my mother telling her I was on my way. When I arrived in Waterside Station, there was no one there to meet me so I started my long walk to Drumahoe. As I walked down Daly’s Brae in my uniform, someone must have spotted me in the distance. The bell of Clarke’s Mill at Drumahoe started to ring frantically to my mother that I was home. When I got home the house was filled with my friends, relations and neighbours. They were overjoyed.” – Jim was home – it was over at least. Cpl Jim Donaghy returning home from the First World War.”

“Cpl Jim Donaghy MBE, 10th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers and his former family home 2 Fincairn Road, Drumahoe.” The mural is on the yard wall of the house, which still stands.

“In remembrance of all those who served at home and abroad.”

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Dee St 2nd Batt

Perhaps because of the Covid pandemic, this mural of UDA volunteers on parade reflected in the sunglasses of one of their comrades took months to complete (it was started in late 2020 and was still unfinished last summer). It replaces the previous “UFF Formed 1973” mural – see Northern Island.

Avoniel Road, Belfast. The photograph reproduced – from the 1974 Ulster Workers’ Strike – is included below.

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