Star of Down Maghera

After a good day out at pride of the Raven we stopped off again at the Omniplex in Lisburn for "a feed" on our way to Newcastle 

This is a parade that has been under threat for a few years as many members of the Republican/Nationalist community believe that protestants should not be allowed to express their culture in the seaside town. So much for their vision of an Ireland of equals. 

In fact, they were so accommodating that they tried to have the parade banned and when that failed organised a protest rally. Only problem was that it sort of made their argument look a bit silly when the spectators out enjoying the parade outnumbered the protestors by about 50 to 1. I've never seen as many people out enjoying a parade in Newcastle. 

Traditionally we usually play our blood and thunder selections at this parade  and this year was no different. Was a good way to wind down after a good afternoon in Belfast and the crowd certainly seemed to enjoy our decision as they sang along to many of the traditional Orange tunes and Rangers songs. 

I have to report the ice cream in Grahams that particular evening was top class. Thos Chocolate sprinkles are the ticket! 

Sadly, the band hosting the parade, Star of Down Maghera, employed a deaf man to judge the bass drum category and we were awarded 1st prize. At least, we think he was deaf, after all it can be the only possible explanation. After much soul searching, Mr Willie John Heaney made a spectacular entry into the house of the bands bass drummer, known to us all as "Cutter". Heaney entered through an open window in the middle of the night, rescued back the trophy that had been awarded, and returned it to the Maghera lads. 

In an exclusive interview with this column Mr Heaney said "there is no way I could allow this to happen. The poor man judging best bass drum mustn't have had a musical note in his head. I have heard the rumour that he was deaf and I believe it. How else could he give that idiot any sort of musical award" 

Mr Heaney added "There is no way I would allow Cutter to keep the trophy. I couldn't give people the chance to point at the band and say that they were winning cups under false pretences".

Cutter said he was saddened by Heaney's comments but claimed if anyone was qualified to talk about winning cups under false pretences then it was Willie John Heaney as he'd done it for years.