15th September – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

15th September


Tuesday 15 September 1970

Another landmark in the violence was reached when the one hundredth explosion in 1970 occurred. Officers of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) voted narrowly in favour of remaining unarmed.

[The policy was overtaken by events and eventually all officers were rearmed.]

Wednesday 15 September 1971

A Catholic civilian, William McGreanery (43), was shot dead by a British soldier in the early hours of the morning as he made his way home. McGreanery was at the junction of Westland Street and Lone Moor Road when he was shot by a soldier in a sanger in the Army base in the old Essex factory.

The soldier who shot him made a statement at the time stating he had fired at a man aiming a rifle at his post. Friends and eyewitnesses said that Mr. McGreanery was unarmed when he was shot.

[On 20 June 2010 a Historical Enquires Team (HET) report into the shooting concluded that: “It is the view of the HET that he was not pointing a rifle at the soldier at the time. He was not involved with any paramilitary organisation, he was not carrying a firearm of any description, and he posed no threat to the soldiers at the observation post.” What was also revealed during the HET investigation was that the soldier shot dead on 14 September 1971 had two close relatives also serving in Derry at that time. One of them was in the same Army base in the old Essex factory and the other in Drumahoe just outside the city.] 4

A British soldier died one day after being shot in Belfast.

Tuesday 15 September 1987

The Northern Ireland Office (NIO) issued guidelines on fair employment Religious Equality of Opportunity in Employment: An Employers’ Guide to Fair Employment. Many commentators saw this initiative as a response to growing pressure from supporters of the MacBride Principles in the United States of America.

Sunday 15 September 1996

There was media speculation that the Irish Republican Army (IRA) was about to call a permanent ceasefire, but this was rejected by republican representatives. There were a series of pickets by loyalists outside Catholic chapels in Ballymena, Bushmills and Dervock, all in County Antrim.

A Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) councillor, David McAllister, said the pickets were a response to the rerouting of Orange parades and the boycott of Protestant businesses by Catholics. The protests were widely condemned. The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) arrested three men in connection with the murder of Michael Whelan (35) on 12 September 1996.

Monday 15 September 1997

Multi-Party Talks Resumed While Sinn Féin (SF) entered Stormont, Belfast, to take part in the multi-party talks, the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), the Progressive Unionist Party (PUP), and the Ulster Democratic Party (UDP) did not turn up for the for first plenary session. Instead the three Unionist parties attended a special meeting at the UUP headquarters in Glengall Street, Belfast.

[The three parties rejoined the talks on 17 September 1997.]

In addition to SF, the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland (APNI), Labour (Lab), the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP), and the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition (NIWC) all attended the talks. The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and the United Kingdom Unionist Party (UKUP) had walked out of Stormont on 21 July 1997 in protest at the decision to allow SF to enter Castle Buildings at Stormont. Paul Murphy, then Political Development Minister, held a meeting with UUP leaders.

Wednesday 15 September 1999

Research showed that the forensic testing for use of firearms was flawed. The ‘paraffin’ test had been used to find traces of lead particles, for example on the hands or clothing of people suspected of firing weapons.

However, research that had been commissioned by the Bloody Sunday Inquiry found that such testing was “flawed” because, for example, exposure to car exhaust could show a ‘positive’ result.

There was a paramilitary ‘punishment’ attack on a man (52) in the Waterside area of Derry. The man was shot in one leg. Loyalists carried out incendiary bomb attacks on three businesses in Ballycastle, County Antrim.

There was an arson attack on an Orange hall in Donaghmore, near Newry, County Down. The hall was damaged in the attack and “real IRA” graffiti was painted on the walls.

Saturday 15 September 2001

Loyalist paramilitaries attempted to kill a Catholic taxi driver at Parkmount Terrace, Shore Road, north Belfast, at 06.00am (06.00BST). Two youths fired a shot at the taxi which struck the vehicle but misted the driver.

The Red Hand Defenders (RHD), a cover name used by members of the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), claimed responsibility for the attack. Police recovered a handgun in the area. Alban Maginness, then a Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) Assembly member for the area, said the attack again called into question the Loyalist ceasefires.

A house in Donard Drive, Lisburn, County Antrim, was attacked with a petrol bomb at approximately 11.00pm (23.00BST). The house was unoccupied at the time of the attack and the kitchen was extensively damaged by fire

Remembering all innocent victims of the Troubles

Today is the anniversary of the follow  people killed as a results of the conflict in Northern Ireland

To the innocent on the list – Your memory will live  forever

– To  the Paramilitaries  –

“There are many things worth living for, a few things worth dying for, but nothing worth killing for.

  6 People lost their lives on the 15th September  between 1971 – 1993


15 September 1971

William McGreanery,  (43)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Died shortly after being shot by sniper from Bligh’s Lane British Army (BA) base, while walking at the junction of Laburnum Terrace and Westland Street, Derry.


15 September 1971
Paul Carter,  (21) nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died one day after being shot outside Royal Victoria Hospital, Falls Road, Belfast.


15 September 1972
John Davis, (22) nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died three weeks after being shot while on British Army (BA) foot patrol, Meenan Square, Bogside, Derry.


15 September 1973
Maurice Spence,   (25)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Found shot in his car, Glenwherry, near Ballymena, County Antrim


15 September 1990

Louis  Robinson,   (42)

Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Off duty. Abducted at Irish Republican Army (IRA) roadblock, while travelling in minibus, Killeen, County Armagh. Body found shot by the side of Concession Road, Cullaville, near Crossmaglen, County Armagh, on 18 September 1990.


15 September 1993
Adrian McGovern,   (34)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot outside his home, Stoneyford Road, Lisburn, County Antrim. Contractor to British Army (BA) / Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC).



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