Northern Ireland news

Tricolour on council property in Carnlough removed

A tricolour and flag removed from council owned property in Carnlough earlier last week
Connla Young

A council has been urged to take action against loyalist flags after a tricolour was removed from a pole in a Co Antrim village.

The flag and pole, which had been in the seaside village of Carnlough for four years, were taken down last week following claims that Mid and East Antrim Borough Council pushed for its removal.

They were put up on council land without permission in 2016 along with a stone monument to mark the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising.

The 3ft high memorial was later removed.

The tributes were put in place by the East Antrim Republican Research Group.

It is understood members of that group removed the flag and pole last week.

Carnlough is a mainly nationalist village within a unionist dominated council.

It is believed there is one other tricolour in the area but it is not located on council property.

Sources say that prior to the flagpole being erected to mark the Easter Rising, numerous flags were regularly erected throughout the seaside village.

It is understood that during the summer months local people regularly kept watch at the pole after several flags were stolen.

Sinn Féin councillor James McKeown said he was recently told by a council official that the authority was planning to bring in a contractor to remove the pole and flag.

He said the issue of flags across the district needs to be addressed.

"With the council demanding the removal of one flag in Carnlough it's time they stepped up to the mark and did something about all the other flags and all the other murals throughout the borough," he said.

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