8th June – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

8th June


Tuesday 8 June 1971

General Harry Tuzo, with escorts, circa 1972

Harry Tuzo, then General Officer Commanding the British Army (BA), said that a permanent military solution to the conflict could not be achieved.

Saturday 8 June 1974

The Price sisters ended their hunger strike in Brixton Prison, England. The hunger strike had lasted six months because of a policy of force-feeding by the prison authorities.

Wednesday 8 June 1977

Roy Mason, then Secretary of State, announced that the strength of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) would be increased by 1,200 and that of the Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) increased to 2,500 full-time members.

He also announced that there would be more undercover activity by troops, and that the spearhead battalion would be withdrawn.

Monday 8 June 1981

Tom McElwee,

Tom McElwee, then an Irish Republican Army (IRA) prisoner, joined the hunger strike.

See 1981 Hungry Strike

Friday 8 June 1990

Banbridge District Council introduced a form of ‘power-sharing’.

Monday 8 June 1992


A British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) programme made a number of claims about Brian Nelson, who had operated as a British Army (BA) agent and a Ulster Defence Association (UDA) intelligence officer.

The programme claimed that Nelson had been involved in 10 murders, attempted murders, or conspiracies to murder, and that his BA controllers had know of the events. The programme further claimed that in some instances BA intelligence had failed to pass on information about planned attacks to the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC).

See Brian Nelson

Tuesday 8 June 1993


Patrick Mayhew, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, held a meeting with James Molyneaux, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), in London. This was the start of a fresh set of bilateral talks.

Wednesday 8 June 1994

A small incendiary device was found in a snooker hall in Trim, County Meath, Republic of Ireland, following a statement by the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), that firebombs had been planted in the Republic.

Sunday 8 June 1997

During the continuing protest by Loyalist pickets at the Catholic church at Harryville, Ballymena, there was an attempt to burn down the chapel.

A parade of bands had been organised and there were violent confrontations between the Loyalists and the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) with 27 officers being injured.

A number of plastic bullets were fired at the demonstrators. Sean McNally (24) had to have his leg amputated following a ‘punishment’ shooting involving a shotgun.

Monday 8 June 1998

The fact that the newly established Police Commission in Northern Ireland did not contain any of the people nominated by the Irish government, on behalf of Nationalists in Northern Ireland, was thought to have caused considerable difficulties between the two governments.

A leaked memo indicated that Marjorie (Mo) Mowlam, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, had personally contacted the Irish government, the White House, the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP), Sinn Féin (SF), and other interested parties to explain her decision and to seek agreement for it.

[The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) was eventually called in to try to discover the source of the leak in the Northern Ireland Office (NIO). This was one of a number of leaks in the recent pass. Seamus Mallon, then deputy leader of the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP), questioned the loyalty of the civil servants working for Mowlam.]

Tuesday 8 June 1999

Fourteen pipe-bombs were found by Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officers in the Loyalist Mourneview estate in Lurgan, County Armagh.

[A man was later charged in relation to the find.]

Tony Blair, then British Prime Minister, and Bertie Ahern, then Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister), announced a series of intensive talks in a final attempt to break the deadlock in the Northern Ireland talks before the 30 June 1999 deadline

. Les Rodgers, then Chairman of the Police Federation, spoke at the organisation’s annual conference. He claimed that some lawyers, academics and human rights groups were part of “an evil conspiracy to vilify this police force”. He also claimed that this attempt was “being coordinated by Sinn Féin”.

Thursday 8 June 2000

A Catholic mother and her 20 year old daughter escaped injury in a pipe-bomb attack on their home in Annalong, County Down. The two women were at home when the explosion rocked their terrace house shortly after 11.00pm. The attack was carried out by Loyalist paramilitaries.



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.

5 People lost their lives on the 8th June between 1972 – 1977


08 June 1972

Jean Smith   (24)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: not known (nk)
Shot by sniper, while travelling in car at bus terminus, Glen Road, Andersonstown, Belfast.


08 June 1972
Norman Campbell  (19)

Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: not known (nk)
Shot at his workplace, building site, Upper Townsend Street, Shankill, Belfast.


08 June 1972

Samuel Donegan   (61)

Status: Garda Siochana (GS),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by booby trap bomb left by side of road, Legakelly, near Newtownbutler, County Fermanagh. Garda Donegan had strayed a few yards over the border into Northern Ireland.


08 June 1972
Edward Megahey  (44)

Status: Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died three days after being shot by sniper while on Ulster Defence Regiment mobile patrol, Buncrana Road, Derry.


08 June 1977
Gerald Tucker   (35)

Status: Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Off duty. Shot shortly after leaving his workplace, Royal Victoria Hospital, Falls Road, Belfast.




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