ALMOST 10,000 people have put their name to a petition calling for a Scottish council to intervene and stop an Orange Order walk from going ahead.

More than 9500 people have signed a petition opposing a parade to mark the opening of an Orange Lodge in Stonehaven on March 16.

It comes as Aberdeenshire Council prepares to make a decision on the parade on Tuesday, as the notice of permission is brought before the Kincardine & Mearns Area Committee.

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“Should the committee decide enough information about the procession has been provided, members will be asked to determine whether to impose conditions, whether to prohibit the procession, or whether to take no action at all,” a spokesperson for the council said.

The petition describes the march as “deeply rooted in sectarianism” and adds: “Not only would this event – with 200 marchers ‘bussed in’ – severely disrupt daily activities and cause significant traffic congestion, but it also risks poisoning our peaceful environment.

“We have seen too often elsewhere how Orange Order parades foment a threatening atmosphere, and can spill over into violence and abuse.

“This intimidatory practice cannot be justified on the grounds of freedom and expression.”

The petition further urges local councillors to “use their power and influence to prevent this event”.

We also previously told how a number of businesses in Stonehaven indicated they would close should the parade go ahead.

A spokesperson for the Market Bar said: “I don’t want to take any risks of trouble starting in here.

“We don’t want any hassle. We might open in the evening depending on what happens but the doors for the Market Bar will be shut during the day.”

David Walkers, executive officer at the Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland, rejected accusations of “anti-Catholic and anti-Irish hostility” made against the procession by the petition.

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"This is usually the allegation that is posted against us without any evidence to suggest that is the case,” he said.

"We're a very peaceful organisation, all of our members conduct themselves in the proper manner."