1st January – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

1st January

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Wednesday 1 January 1969

People’s Democracy March Began Approximately 40 members of People’s Democracy (PD) began a four-day march from Belfast across Northern Ireland to Derry.

The Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA) and some nationalists in Derry had advised against the march. The march was modelled on Martin Luther King’s Selma to Montgomery march. The first day involved a walk from Belfast to Antrim.

[Over the next four days the number of people on the march grew to a few hundred. The march was confronted and attacked by Loyalist crowds on a number of occasions the most serious attack occurring on 4 January 1969.]

Thursday 1 January 1970

UDR Recruits drill practice

The Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) came into existence but was to become operational on 1 April 1970.

 

Monday 1 January 1973

Two men were found shot dead near Burnfoot, County Donegal, they had been killed by an unidentified Loyalist paramilitary group.

The United Kingdom (UK), including Northern Ireland, joined the European Union (then the EEC). The Republic of Ireland also joined the EEC on the same date.

[Membership of the EU was to have different consequences for the two parts of Ireland and also have more general implications for the whole of the island. The Republic of Ireland has over the years received more funding than Northern Ireland from the EU for agriculture and to improve the infrastructure of the country. Later, with the removal of internal border controls, one physical manifestation of the economic border between Northern Ireland and the Republic, namely the Customs Posts on every ‘approved’ road, disappeared allowing for freer movement of people and goods between the two parts of the island. See article by Jeson Ingraham.]

Tuesday 1 January 1974

Executive Takes Office The Northern Ireland Executive, which had been announced on 21 November 1973, officially took office. Although certain powers were devolved to the Executive and the Assembly others, including security and certain economic matters, were retained by the British government and the Northern Ireland Office (NIO).

Wednesday 1 January 1975

[Public Records 1975 – Released 1 January 2006: Note of a meeting between Harold Wilson, then British Prime Minister, and the leaders of the main Churches in Northern Ireland.]

Saturday 1 January 1977

A 15 month old baby boy was killed in a car bomb explosion at Harmin Park, Glengormley, near Belfast. The car bomb had been planted by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and an inadequate warning given. A British soldier was shot dead in Crossmaglem, County Armagh by the IRA.

Tuesday 1 January 1980

Two undercover members of the British Army (BA) were shot dead by other undercover members of the BA while there were setting up an ambush near Forkhill, County Armagh.

Doreen McGuinness (16), a Catholic teenager, was shot dead by British soldiers while she was ‘joy-riding’ in a stolen car on the Whiterock Road, Ballymurphy, Belfast. John Hermon succeeded Kenneth Newman as Chief Constable of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC).

Wednesday 1 January 1986

Two Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officers were killed while on foot patrol in Thomas Street in Armagh. The Irish Republican Army (IRA) exploded a remote controlled bomb that had been hidden in a litter bin.

Monday 1 January 1990 The new Fair Employment Act became law in Northern Ireland.

Friday 1 January 1993

The Irish National Congress (INC) took direct action to reopen a number of border roads that had been blocked by the security forces in Northern Ireland.

[The ‘unapproved’ roads had been closed during the early part of the conflict to try to secure the border. The action by the INC coincided with the end of European Community internal boundaries.]

Saturday 1 January 1994

The Irish Republican Army (IRA) planted a 11 firebombs in shops and other premises in and around Belfast. The Linen Hall Library was one of the targets and was slightly damaged in the attack.

[The library contains the Northern Ireland Political Collection among which are thousands of ephemeral items produced by Sinn Féin (SF).]

The Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), issued a statement stating that they retained the right to respond militarily in 1994.

Monday 1 January 1996

Ian Lyons (31), was shot dead by the group Direct Action Against Drugs (DAAD) in Lurgan. DAAD was considered by many in Northern Ireland to be a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Irish Republican Army (IRA).

Wednesday 1 January 1997

Two bombs, estimated at 500 lbs of explosive, were left in the grounds of Belfast Castle. The bombs were safely defused. [No group claimed responsibility but it was believed to be the work of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) (?).]

Thursday 1 January 1998

Several shots were fired at the home of a Catholic family in the Greymount area of Greencastle, north Belfast. There were no injuries and no Loyalist paramilitary group claimed responsibility for the shooting. Martin Morgan, then a Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) councillor, criticised the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) for not responding quickly enough to the incident.

Tuesday 1 January 2002

The Euro, the new European currency, was introduced in the Republic of Ireland along with 11 other European countries. The UK had taken the decision not to join the Euro so Northern Ireland remained with the Sterling as its single legal currency. The Irish Punt will operate alongside the Euro in the Republic of Ireland until 9 February 2002. Many businesses in the border areas of Northern Ireland had made arrangements to allow customers to conduct transactions in Euro.

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Remembering all innocent victims of the Troubles

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

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die

– Thomas Campbell

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.

12 People   lost their lives on the 1st January  between  1973 – 1986

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01 January 1973


Oliver Boyce,  (25)

nfNIRI
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Defence Association (UDA)
Found shot in ditch, Birdstown, near Burnfoot, County Donegal.

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01 January 1973

Breige Porter, (21)

nfNIRI
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Defence Association (UDA)
Found shot in ditch, Birdstown, near Burnfoot, County Donegal.

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01 January 1974
John Whyte,   (24)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot during sniper attack on British Army (BA) mobile patrol, McClure Street, off Ormeau Road, Belfast.

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01 January 1977
Graeme Dougan,  (1)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed in car bomb explosion near his home, Harmin Park, Glengormley, near Belfast, County Antrim. Inadequate warning given.

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01 January 1977
David Hind,  (23)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot by sniper while on British Army (BA) foot patrol, Crossmaglen, County Armagh

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01 January 1980
Simon Bates,   (23)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Undercover British Army (BA) member. Shot in error, by other British Army (BA) members while setting ambush position, Tullydonnell, near Forkhill, County Armagh

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01 January 1980


Gerald Hardy,   (18)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Undercover British Army (BA) member. Shot in error, by other British Army (BA) members while setting ambush position, Tullydonnell, near Forkhill, County Armagh.

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01 January 1980


Doreen McGuinness,  (16)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot while travelling in stolen car at British Army (BA) Vehicle Check Point (VCP), Whiterock Road, Ballymurphy, Belfast.

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01 January 1981


Eugene Simons,   (27)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Abducted somewhere in the Castlewellan area, County Down. Found shot, partially buried in bogland, Newtown, near Knockbridge, County Louth, on 15 May 1984

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01 January 1982


Samuel Pollock,  (19)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by booby trap bomb while getting into off duty Ulster Defence Regiment member’s car, Donard car park, Newcastle, County Down.

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01 January 1986


James McCandless,   (39)

Protestant
Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by remote controlled bomb hidden in litter bin, detonated when Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) foot patrol passed, Thomas Street, Armagh.

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01 January 1986


Michael Williams,   (24)

Protestant
Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by remote controlled bomb hidden in litter bin, detonated when Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) foot patrol passed, Thomas Street, Armagh.

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