Orange hall rises from the ashes two years after arson attack

New and improved Orange hall is open again

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Orange hall rises from the ashes two years after arson attack

Alan Laird, Worshipful Master of the Thiepval Memorial LOL 1005, at the re-opening of the Orange hall in Convoy on Saturday.

An Orange hall in Convoy has re-opened two years after being destroyed in an arson attack.

In October 2014, the Orange hall in Convoy was targeted by arsonists in a malicious attack on the community facility. The blaze occurred only weeks after the Newtowncunningham Orange hall was destroyed in a similar incident.

Brethren from Thiepval Memorial LOL 1005 were joined at Saturday’s formal reopening and dedication service by senior Orangemen, including the Grand Master of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland, Edward Stevenson. Also in attendance were Deputy Grand Master Harold Henning and Grand Chaplain Rev Mervyn Gibson, who officiated the religious service.

The new and improved Orange property is both larger and better equipped than its predecessor, incorporating a meeting room, a room for band practice and extra storage. It also provides sporting amenities for young people, as well as broadband facilities.

Convoy Worshipful Master Alan Laird expressed his delight at the completion of the two-year rebuilding project.

He said: “The opening of our new hall is a tremendous accomplishment for all those associated with this substantial rebuild project. The upgraded hall has been built for the use of the local community with the long term in mind. We trust it will be utilised not only by the lodge and pipe band, but also the young people of the area.”

 Mr Stevenson offered his congratulations to the members of the Convoy lodge at the official opening.

The Grand Master said: “It is tremendous to see this community facility rise again from the ashes and fully restored to its former glory. Its renewed and improved presence is testament to the fortitude and resilience of the Protestant and Orange fraternity in the Donegal area."