One of Derry’s most senior police officers last night hailed the Lundy parade in Derry’s city centre as a successful family event and praised everyone involved in organising what has in previous years been a contentious parade.
While hundreds of Apprentice Boys marched through the city centre local shopping centres were busy with customers who had been kept away due to extreme weather conditions earlier in the week.
While a heavy police presence was maintained across the Diamond, Bishop Street Ferryquay Street and Carlisle Road, no arrests were made during the parade.
Richmond Centre Manager Fergal Rafferty said he was pleased the day had passed off without incident and was now looking forward to an uninterrupted run-up to Christmas in the coming weeks.
He said: “For us now it’s about focusing on the coming weeks with many traders offering euro for pound rates and many other attractive deals for shoppers as well as late night opening.”
While barricades had previously been erected along Ferryquay Street, yesterday no barricades were in place as bandsmen and supporters marched throughout the afternoon,
Despite earlier fears, a dissident republican protest which took place in Shipquay Street during the afternoon also passed off without incident.
District Commander Chief Superintendent Stephen Martin last night welcomed the peaceful outcome to the annual Lundy parade.
He said: “The parade has passed off extremely well and without incident and we were pleased and encouraged by the orderly and respectful way in which the event was conducted and marshalled.
“I want to pay tribute to the dedicated and hard work that has gone on behind the scenes by parade organisers, City Centre Management, local traders and community representatives and would thank all those involved for making today an enjoyable family event.
“We can now focus on the run up to Christmas and look forward to a peaceful and prosperous season.”