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Is writing on the wall after all at Mid-Ulster Council?

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Is writing on the wall after all at Mid-Ulster Council? thumbnailThe logo in Dungannon Council chamber - minus words.

Just under 15 months after a row erupted over the absence of the Council's name in English and Irish next to the logo on a panel in a wall in the Council chamber, Sinn Fein has expressed its desire to "review" the situation.

The sign was installed during refurbishment of the Council offices in Dungannon, where full meetings of the Council are held, and a panel the height of the room was placed behind the top table, where the Chair, Deputy Chair and Chief Executive are seated.

Mid-Ulster Council's logo bears a shield depicting various items synonymous with the district, with the Council's name in both Irish and English beside, with the Irish positioned on top of the English.

And while King Belshazzar in the Old Testament would have been happy had there been no writing on the wall in his Babylonian palace for Daniel to interpret, Sinn Fein are keen to see the writing on the wall.

However, the Chief Executive Anthony Tohill has advised both at the time of the original row and again at the most recent meeting of the Policy & Resources Committee that the decision was made "due to aesthetics and the shape of the wall panelling".

Sinn Fein Clogher Valley Councillor Sean McGuigan referred to the logo at the most recent meeting of the Council's Policy and Resources Committee, saying "it was not the complete Council branding".

Cllr McGuigan said he had been approached in relation to this at a recent event held in Dungannon chamber and he had advised the person this was only a temporary logo which would be replaced, asking when this would happen.

The Council's Head of Marketing and Communications, Ursula Mezza, advised that the logo in Dungannon Chamber was not temporary, although it could be reviewed.

Cllr McGuigan claimed he had assumed the current logo was only temporary and proposed that this be reviewed in order to have "full branding" in Dungannon chamber.

His party colleague Sean McPeake stated his agreement with Cllr McGuigan's comments and claimed the "Council brand has not been used in the way approved".

He expressed concern that "short cuts were being taken" and "this should not be the case for Council chambers".

Referring to the ongoing debate at Stormont over an Irish language act, the UUP's Walter Cuddy suggested they should wait until that issue was resolved before continuing with further Irish signage so it won't need replaced again.

The DUP's Paul McLean said that some clarity was required from previous minutes on what had been agreed with regard to branding.

The Chief Executive advised that rollout of the branding had been agreed with parties and that minutes regarding this would be brought back to a future committee meeting.

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