Flag stolen from Orange Hall in Coleraine

editorial image

The Orange Institution has condemned the theft of a Union flag from an Orange hall near Coleraine.

The flag was torn down from the roof of Ballinrees Orange hall and the pole on which it was erected was also removed.

The incident at the property on the Windyhill Road is thought to have occurred during the early hours of Friday morning.

A spokesman condemned the flag theft as a “hate crime”.

He said: “The Orange fraternity in both Macosquin District and County Londonderry is disgusted at this deeply offensive act which is a blatant attempt to antagonize the pro-Union community.

“Those responsible are clearly a minority, with a sectarian mindset, who are determined to drag us back to the past. They must not be allowed to succeed.”

The spokesman called for no retaliation, and urged witnesses to contact police so the perpetrators could be brought to justice.

The Ballinrees incident is the ninth attack on Orange property this calendar year.

The most serious occurrence was an arson attack on Ballytyrone Orange hall last month, which destroyed the Loughgall building.