Members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians hold their annual parade in Ballybofey, County Donegal.

Although membership is in decline, 5,000 people attend the annual 15th August Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH) Feast of the Assumption parade in Ballybofey, County Donegal.

Different in political and religious principals from the Orange Order the AOH has some similarities in its structure and form of parades. The AOH is a nationalist and Catholic organisation. It is against all violence and is anti-abortion and anti-divorce. Only Catholics over the age of 18 may join the AOH.

Colm Gallen is a longstanding AOH member. For the past three months he has been attending band practices to prepare for the Ballybofey parade.

Around 35 bands, mostly from Ulster are taking part in the parade including one from Desertmartin in County Derry. This band earlier marched through their mainly Protestant village without incident. The Reverend William McCrea sees this as a fine example of Protestants not objecting to Catholic parades.

President of the AOH Raymond McCormick is keen to stress that their parades are not contentious, adding,

I think it would be a bad thing if the Ancient Order of Hibernians decided to stay off the streets.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 15 August 1996. The reporter is Damien Tiernan.