A NEWLY formed nationalist flute band has won leave to take legal proceedings for judicial review against a Parades Commission ruling. Banna Fluit Naoimh Phadraig has been prohibited from entering the centre of Kilkeel, south Down, during the annual St Patrick’s day march. No restrictions, however, have been placed on the traditional parade by St Joseph’s Pipe Band, a route identical to the one followed last year. A pipe bomb was found on the route of last year’s parade. The Parades Commission said – with the history of tension and disturbances in the majority Protestant town – there was considerable potential for disorder if the “overtly nationalist band”, flying a tricolour, was permitted to proceed unrestricted. The new band had applied for permission to march into Kilkeel from the Newry direction, parading through the town to meet a second band, and then returning to parade through the town centre – including the sensitive area around Mourne Presbyterian Church. A Parades Commission spokesman said a great deal of opposition had been publicly expressed concerning the band, its origins and its motivation. A protest, he added, had been notified to take place. “The commission had to take this and other factors, including the effect on community relations, as well as the implications of the Human Rights legislation into account in reaching its decision,” a spokesman said. “It has therefore imposed severe route restrictions on this band and will only permit it to parade a small part of its route on the outskirts of Kilkeel,” he added. Yesterday, the band was granted leave to take legal proceedings for judicial review in Belfast high court to challenge the decision. Band spokesman Donal Burke said the proceedings are regarded as a test case of the Parades Commission’s practices and procedures. “The case challenges the secret deliberations of the Parades Commission and their refusal to disclose relevant information to those affected by an adverse decision,” he said. Madden and Finucane solicitors said yesterday’s decision represented an important preliminary stage in a case that would ultimately determine important and fundamental issues of human and civil rights. The case was adjourned until after Easter to allow the parties to consider the relevant issues to be argued before Mr Justice Kerr.