2nd March – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

2nd March


Tuesday 2 March 1971

Harry Tuzo, then a Lieutenant-General, replaced Vernon Erskine-Crum who had been appointed General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the British Army (BA) in Northern Ireland on 4 February 1971, but who had suffered a heart attack.

[Erskine-Crum died on 17th March 1971]

Wednesday 2 March 1977

Donald Robinson (56), an English businessman, was shot dead by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) at his place of work near University Street, Belfast.

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) programme ‘Tonight’ carried out an investigation into interrogation techniques employed at Castlereagh holding centre.

[This programme subsequently led Amnesty International to conduct its own investigation which was published in June 1978.

The reaction to the programme also led to the publication of the Bennett Report from British government which was published in March 1979. Both these reports were critical of the methods used to interrogate people suspected of paramilitary involvement.]

Republican prisoners decided to call off the ‘blanket protest’  so as not to detract attention from the hunger strike.

See  1981 Hunger Strike.

Wednesday 2 March 1983

The Northern Ireland Assembly passed a motion urging the British government to do all in its power to stop the proposed inquiry into the Northern Ireland conflict by the Political Committee of the European Parliament. The Rapporteur was Mr N.J. Haagerup.

[The report was drawn up and passed by the European Parliament on 29th March 1982 ]

The Assembly also established a Security and Home Affairs Committee.

Monday 2 March 1987

The Ulster Clubs announced a plan to set up an alternative system of government.

Friday 2 March 1990

There was a meeting of the Anglo-Irish Intergovernmental Conference (AIIC) in London.

Monday 2 March 1992

Two Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) soldiers were convicted, along with a third man, of ‘aiding and abetting’ the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), in the killing of Loughlin Maginn on 25 August 1989.

[The killing led to the establishment of the Stevens Inquiry.] Muammar Gaddafi, then President of Libya, announced that he was breaking his country’s links with the Irish Republican Army (IRA).

Tuesday 2 March 1993

Patrick Mayhew, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, gave a speech in Bangor, County Down, in which he said that Britain was “neutral” with regard to Northern Ireland’s position within the United Kingdom (UK). Mayhew stressed that the union between Britain and Northern Ireland would only be changed if a majority of the population voted for some new constitutional arrangement.

Wednesday 2 March 1994

The European Commission recommended continuation of its 15 million ecu support for the International Fund for Ireland (IFI).

Thursday 2 March 1995

James Seymour, formerly a Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officer, died nearly 22 years after being shot by the Irish Republican Army (IRA), outside Coalisland RUC base, County Tyrone. [He had been shot on 4 May 1973 and was paralysed and partly comatose since the incident.]

Saturday 2 March 1996

David Trimble, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), and Ian Paisley, then leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), said they would not attend the ‘proximity’ talks at Stormont.

Sunday 2 March 1997

An Irish Republican Army (IRA) mortar was discovered close to Warrenpoint, County Down.

Saturday 2 March 2002

Two 16 year old boys were slightly injured when an explosive device, hidden in a police traffic cone, detonated as they moved it. The device had been left at the Farmacaffley point-to-point races and the boys had moved the traffic cone to allow a car to pass.

[Dissident Republican paramilitaries were thought to have been responsible for the attack and it was believed that the intended target was the security forces.]

John Reid, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, delivered a speech at the New University of Ireland in Galway in which he called on Nationalists to reassure Unionists that “what matters is a peaceful, just, democratic, and richly diverse island, not an ancient constitutional struggle”.

Thomas Shaw fought in Messines, Ypres, and Passchendaele
Thomas Shaw

Thomas Shaw, the last veteran in Ireland of the First World War, died at the age of 102. Shaw, who was from Belfast, joined the 16th battalion of the Royal Irish Rifles (RIR) in 1916.

He had enlisted earlier at the age of 15 when he lied about his age. However his brother, who was a Military Policeman, met him by accident while in France and had him sent home. He rejoined the RIR at the end of the Battle of the Somme. Shaw saw action at Messines, Ypres, and Passchendaele. He returned to Northern Ireland in April 1919.

See: Thomas Shaw June 1899 – 2 March 2002



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.

8 People   lost their lives on the  2nd March between 1972– 1995



02 March 1972

Thomas Morrow,  (28)

Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Official Irish Republican Army (OIRA)
Died two days after being shot while investigating break-in at factory, Camlough Road, Newry, County Down.


02 March 1973

Patrick Crossan,  (34)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Bus driver. Shot as he stopped at bus stop, Woodvale Road, Belfast.


02 March 1973
George Walmsley,   (52)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Republican group (REP)
Shot shortly after leaving Orange Hall, Ligoniel Road, Belfast


02 March 1974

Thomas McClinton,   (28)

Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot while on Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) foot patrol, Donegall Street, Belfast.


02 March 1977
Donald Robinson,  (56)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
English businessman. Shot at his workplace, Lawrence Street, off University Street, Belfast.


02 March 1983

Lindsay McCormack,   (49)

Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot while on Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) foot patrol, Serpentine Road, Greencastle, Belfast.


02 March 1984

Thomas Loughlin,   (40)

Status: Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Off duty. Killed by booby trap bomb, attached to his van, outside his home, Castlederg, County Tyrone.


02 March 1995

James Seymour,  (55)

Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died nearly 22 years after being shot by sniper, outside Coalisland Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) base, County Tyrone. Been in a coma since the incident on 4 May 1973.



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