An Arch to be proud of: Parkmount
It is believed an arch was first opened in Parkmount in the 1920’s, although it could have been earlier. It stood at the junction of Park Road and Water Street.
Parkmount Arch 1945
The second Parkmount Arch was opened in July 1945. Many leading members of Portadown District LOL No. 1 were present including Brother Herbert Whitten who presided over the opening ceremony and Brother R J Magowan who acted as Chairman. Brother George Dougan, who was a well respected Doctor of the town, as well as the Portadown District Master at the time, switched on the lights at the official ceremony.
Dr Dougan received acclamation during the opening ceremony of the arch on his recent election victory. In turn he thanked the crowd and paid tribute to the members of Parkmount Flute Band who had rendered assistance during the campaign. George Dougan was MP for central Armagh. He was elected to Stormont in March 1941, replacing David Graham Shillington.
The Present Arch
The present Parkmount Arch has been refurbished and repainted many times as it has been attacked by republicans. The latest refurbishment took place in 2014, one side of the Arch reads ‘In memory of the Parkmount Community’ while the other side reads ‘In Memory of Bro Ivan Forbes’, who was a tireless worker for the Arch.
An Arch of the Past: Corcrain
The Corcrain Arch was officially opened in June 1937. It was a magnificent structure of wood and steel, and the decorations were described as ‘artistic’. The sixty foot span was comprised of three arch-ways which harmonised in colour and size. The arch contained various symbols of the Orange and Black Orders.
The Arch was completed by Mr Fred Mccullough of Corcrain and Mr A Murphy carried out the painting. Members of the Arch Committee were; Mr John Wright Junior, Mr Thomas Gilpin, Mr William Thompson, Mr David Hamill, Mr Robert Burns and Mr James Fleming.
A large parade of Orangemen, including the Junior Orange, were led by Corcrain Flute Band who provided the music throughout the ceremony. The opening was performed by Mrs Woods under the Chairmanship of Brother David Rock.
David Rock MBE JP held office in Portadown District LOL NO 1 and was a member of LOL 56. He had been a District Commandant of the Ulster Special Constabulary in Portadown.