GLASGOW City Council is considering reviewing its procedures on public processions after an attack on a Catholic priest during an Orange Walk.

The move follows widespread condemnation of an incident in which a priest was apparently spat on by supporters of the walk on Saturday.

Police are now treating the assault as a hate crime, with a top cop calling it “contemptible”.

Four Weddings and a Funeral star John Hannah hit out at ‘fascist f***wits’ following the incident outside St Alphonsus Church on Saturday.

Glasgow City Council will hold a meeting this week with police to discuss the issues raised by the incident as a petition calling for a ban on Orange parades was last night gaining signatures.

Actor Hannah last night tweeted his condemnation of the assault on Canon Tom White.

He said: “It’s the 21st century and my city, Glasgow, still allows this barbaric, bigoted bunch of medieval f***wits to parade through the city displaying their narrow minded blinkered version of fascism for the whole world to see.

“I’m ashamed of you Glasgow.”

Canon Tom White, 43, said he was spat on twice by Orange Order supporters outside St Alphonsus Church in the East End.

His parishioners alleged suffered sectarian abuse.

Following Saturday’s march, the Orange Order condemned the attack and said it would work with Police Scotland to identify those responsible - who leaders insist were not part of the parade, and were not welcome at any futyure parades. 

Almost 20,000 people have signed a petition in less than 24 hours to ban the Orange Walk in Glasgow.

Greens councillor Jon Molyneux told how his group supports a total ban on Orange Order marches.

He said: “There’s a balance of peoples’ rights we need to take into account.

“But, if a clear body of evidence shows peoples’ rights being impinged, there’s more of an opportunity to do something about it in the future.”

A spokesman for the council’s Labour Group condemned hate crime and welcomed the police investigation into the violence.

He added: “Everyone has a right to express their faith and their beliefs, but no-one has to the right to inflict abuse upon others who disagree.”

However, the Scottish Conservatives took a softer line, saying there is a place for Orange marches.

Councillor Thomas Kerr said: “The council has no legal powers to ban any marches and nor should it, public demonstrations are a key pillar to our democracy.

“Clearly the incident involving the priest was wholly unacceptable, and I hope the police are able to find the perpetrators and deal with them however to taint everyone with the same brush isn’t fair, we should remember that the vast majority of those taking part in such events behave responsibly and would never dream of engaging in conduct themselves in such a disrespectful way.”

Superintendent John McBride vowed to rid Scotland of ‘hate crime and bigots’ after a priest was assaulted during the annual Boyne parade.

The identity of the offender remains unknown but there are reports of a man aged between 20 and 30 with a shave head being involved.

The Orange March was passing the church at the time of incident and police are appealing to anyone involved in the parade to contact them as they have information to help identify those responsible.

However, the force has confirmed there is nothing to indicate any involvement by a member of the parade.

A second report of a young man attempting to strike the priest with a baton while parishioners were leaving the vigil Mass is also being followed up by investigators.

Superintendent John McBride said: “We will not tolerate any form of hate crime and behaving in such a way is contemptible.

“I would like to assure everyone that those who choose to react in a sectarian or religiously motivated matter will be identified and dealt with under the law. I’m deeply shocked that some people think this is an acceptable way to act – it isn’t.

“The public can be assured we remain committed to ridding our country of hate crime and the bigots within it who think they won’t be held to account for their actions. I can tell you they will.”

“From our inquiries carried out so far, we are aware of several people commenting online regarding this incident and I would urge anyone with any footage or information about this particular incident to contact us as the footage could aid our enquiries.

“I am also appealing to those who were taking part in the Orange Parade, who may have seen the incident as they were walking past, to contact us and pass on any information.”

A spokesman for Glasgow City Council, said: Glasgow City Council spokeswoman said: “We utterly condemn this appalling behaviour and urge anyone with any information to contact the police.”

“A meeting with council officers will be held this week as it’s perhaps time to review our procedures in light of a number of factors. We will also continue to liaise with Police Scotland, organisers, the Scottish Government, third parties and stakeholders as part of the council’s processions’ code of contact.

“Our aim is always to strike a reasonable balance between protecting the fundamental right of individuals and organisations to organise and participate in public processions, and the need to minimise disruption to the wider community by protecting the rights of all of Glasgow’s citizens to go about their business without unnecessary disturbance and interference.”

Meanwhile, councillor Mhairi Hunter has called for residents to follow official procedures to complain about Orange marches.

Ms Hunter urged constituents to email, phone or visit their local councillor, rather than post on Twitter.

Glasgow City Council publishes a notice of all marches in advance and representations can be made so the local authority can negotiate with the marchers.

However, a Public Processions Committee may be held if there is an unsatisfactory outcome of negotiations with those complaining about the event plan.

Ms Hunter said: “Twitter or Facebook is not something councillors can consider.

“There are procedurally competent ways of objecting.

“Maybe go down that route if you feel strongly instead of simply abusing us on Twitter?”

Jim McHarg, Grand Master of the Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland, said: “I, like so many others, was appalled to hear the reports of the incident that happened outside St Alphonsus Church in Glasgow on Saturday.  Verbal abuse is in itself unacceptable, but allegations of spitting is vile and disgusting, and we hope those involved are brought to justice. 

"Whilst I am assured that no members of the parade were involved in any of the incidents, we understand that it was carried out by a small group of young men who turned up to watch the parade go past.

“The Orange Order is founded on the principal of religious liberty for all. 

"This includes the right of other faiths to celebrate their own heritage and history, just as we celebrate ours.  Unfortunately, there are a small number of people in society who seem unwilling to accept this tolerant approach. 

"Indeed, many of them allude to beliefs and sing songs about a time in the past which they probably know very little about or fail to understand completely. 

"I have only one message for them, you are not welcome at any of our parades.

“I have today asked our Executive Officer to call Canon White to express our sadness at what he had to endure. We have also written to the Archdiocese. We have contacted the Police to offer our full support in their investigations. A number of members of the parade witnessed the incident on Saturday, and senior members intervened at the time to stand up for Canon White. Those members will be key witnesses for the Police and stand ready to assist.

“Whilst it may be said that the Orange Order has different opinions to the Roman Catholic Church, I have no hesitation in stating that today we stand with Canon White in saying that this sort of behaviour has no place in society.”

In our edition of Tuesday 10 July we published an image of Shieldhill Young Defenders Flute Band alongside a story relating to an Orange Walk and an alleged attack on a city priest. The picture was taken from our archive covering a previous walk and we did not make that clear in our caption. SYD FB were not involved in the July event and were indeed engaged in another event elsewhere in Scotland. We would like to take this opportunity to apologise for any offence caused.