Protestant Coalition say Magherafelt council ‘breaking guidelines’

Magherafelt council
Magherafelt council

Magherafelt Protestant Coalition has hit back at Sinn Fein’s demand for a ‘flags policy’ to be included in a leasing agreement with a Castledawson community group.

Sinn Fein group leader on the local District Council Councillor Sean McPeake told a recent council meeting that nationalists living in the Riverside area of the village feel uncomfortable at certain times of the year.

But a spokesman for the Coalition claimed the council was breaking several guidelines by “legislating the Protestant, Unionist, Loyalist community in Castledawson and elsewhere in the district from celebrating their culture and heritage.”

He said that Councillor McPeake ‘had to remember he was living in the United Kingdom and not North Korea’.

The Lower Castledawson Community Association is seeking lottery funding to develop an open space at a soccer pitch in Riverside, but the project depends on the council agreeing to lease the land.

The proposal includes two five aside pitches, a multi-functional building, park planting and a community events space.

The Protestant Coalition asked the council to take into consideration Magherafelt’s shared space policy, religious discrimination and the Good Friday Agreement.