Scottish council could fly tricolour to commemorate 1916

A council in Scotland could fly the tricolour on three buildings to commemorate the 1916 Easter Rising.
John Monaghan

A COUNCIL in Scotland could be set to fly the tricolour from its building to commemorate the centenary of the 1916 Rising.

North Lanarkshire council is considering an application from Cairde Na hEireann, which describes itself as "the national structure for republicans in Scotland", to fly the flag on April 24th from three council buildings in Coatbridge, Cumbernauld and Motherwell.

The council's corporate services committee narrowly voted in favour of the proposal, but there is not expected to be a final decision until the end of March.

If approved, it would change the council's current position on the flying of flags, based on Scottish government protocols which have different flag arrangements to mark special days during the year.

However, there are indications the move could falter after Labour opposed the motion and the Scottish National Party, whose councillors approved the proposal, set to hold a meeting after group leader David Stocks said they had been inundated with complaints.

A spokesman for North Lanarkshire Council said: "We received a request to fly the national flag of Ireland to commemorate the centenary of the Easter Rising.

"The corporate services committee decided to support this application. However, because this decision would represent a departure from current council policy the matter will have to be considered at a future meeting of the council."

A loyalist group, the Regimental Blues, said it would actively oppose the flying of the Irish flag in North Lanarkshire.

It posted an image of a Scottish flag with the caption: "Where in Ireland is Coatbridge?"

Cairde na hEireann's Franny McAdam also said requests to fly the tricolour had been sent to both Glasgow City Council and the Scottish Parliament.

Mr McAdam told Scotland's Herald newspaper: "A precedent has been set several times by Glasgow. This is the biggest event in Irish history and time the Scottish Government and councils supported their Irish communities."

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