Play parks no fun for Gildernew and Elliott

The playpark at Milltown in Dungannon
The playpark at Milltown in Dungannon

The issue of play parks has divided the opinions of Sinn Fein MP, Michelle Gildernew, and Tom Elliott, the Ulster Unionist MLA.

Earlier this week, Mr Elliott launched a process within the Stormont Assembly which called for the banning of play parks being named after terrorists.

That prompted a social network post by Ms Gildernew, who published a photograph of a play park in the Milltown area of Dungannon which features drawings of World War 1 soldiers and asked: “Does Tom Elliot think this is acceptable? And do the SDLP believe that these images are appropriate? Maybe it’s only Irish men and women they have a problem with?”

In response to the Fermanagh-South Tyrone MP’s comments, Mr Elliott told the TIMES: “This commemoration at Milltown is in remembrance to those who gallantly fought to protect our civil rights in the Great War of 1914-18.

“The people who left every area of Ireland in huge numbers to help secure this freedom came from both Unionist & Nationalist traditions, where they lived and for many of them died together in support of the same cause. Indeed some of Ms Gildernew’s Party colleagues have been active in the remembrance and commemorations of the First World War.

“This is no comparison between these brave people who were at war to protect us all, to the illegal terrorists in Northern Ireland and beyond who callously murdered innocent civilians. I wonder is Ms Gildernew defending the actions of Raymond McCreesh and his links to the brutal sectarian murder of ten innocent Protestants at Kingsmills on 5th January 1976?”