Although mostly an Ulster event, the Twelfth is also celebrated in other countries with strong links to Ulster or a history of settlement by Irish Protestants. Outside of Northern Ireland, there are commemorations of The Twelfth in Scotland – particularly in and around Glasgow, where most Irish immigrants settled. In England and Wales, Orange marches aren’t common and Orange Order membership is found primarily in the Merseyside region, although numbers are still small. Marches here tend to be held a week or so before the Twelfth, due to the number of bands and lodges who travel to Northern Ireland to march there. The Liverpool lodges parade both in the city and in the seaside resort of Southport on 12 July.
There are also Twelfth marches in Canada and Australia. As the longest consecutively held parade in North America (first held in 1821), the Twelfth March was the largest parade in Toronto when thousands of Orangemen would march in front of tens of thousands of spectators, until the 1970s. At the time, the Orange Order held such sway that membership in the Order was an unspoken prerequisite for holding civic office. However, the march’s popularity has drastically diminished in recent years, as only about 500 people participate in modern Orange parades. Orangemen’s Day is still a significant holiday in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador, where it is an official provincial paid holiday.
An increase in membership in recent years has seen a revival of the Order in Australia and an annual Twelfth of July parade is currently held in Adelaide. Parades were also formerly held in New Zealand on the Twelfth.
Until the Partition of Ireland in the early 1920s, the Twelfth was celebrated by Protestants in many parts of Ireland. However, the reduction of Protestant political influence in what is now the Republic of Ireland has meant the only remaining major annual parade within the Republic is at Rossnowlagh, County Donegal, in the west of Ulster, which was held on the Twelfth until the 1970s, when it was moved to the weekend before. In the rest of Ireland, outside of the nine-county Province of Ulster, there are no major Orange events.
In July 2010, former Tánaiste Michael McDowell said that the Twelfth should be made a national holiday in the Republic of Ireland as well as in Northern Ireland.