To get a different perspective on the Eleventh Night and the Twelfth Day, I went for a late night walk with Niall Ó Donnghaile around Short Strand about half an hour before midnight.
While some young folk were congregating around the Mountpottinger/Albertbridge Road junction, the area was largely deserted – the only noise being the PA belting out music in Pitt Park, about a hundred yards away over the wall.
Now a Sinn Féin councillor, and this year Belfast’s Lord Mayor, Niall has lived in Short Strand for a long time and reflected on what the Eleventh Night means for the area community – most folk staying indoors, or going away for a few days – as well as how the season has changed over the years.
He also spoke about the burning of flags, and the fact that his image on his election posters would be going up in smoke later that night.
Alan Meban. Tweets as @alaninbelfast. Blogs about cinema and theatre over at Alan in Belfast. A freelancer who writes about, reports from, live-tweets and live-streams civic, academic and political events and conferences. He delivers social media training/coaching; produces podcasts and radio programmes; is a FactCheckNI director; a member of Ofcom’s Advisory Committee for Northern Ireland; and a member of the Corrymeela Community.