On this day

Published in 20th-century / Contemporary History, General, Issue 6 (Nov/Dec 2011), On this Day, Volume 19



4 2001

The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) was renamed the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) following a ten-year reform plan for policing set up under the terms of the Belfast Agreement (1998).


10 1861

The remains of Terence Bellew McManus, which had lain in state at the Mechanics’ Institute for a week, were re-interred in Glasnevin Cemetery after a massive funeral organised by the Fenian movement.


13 1911

Andrew Bonar Law, son of a Presbyterian minister from Coleraine, Co. Derry, and staunch opponent of Home Rule, became leader of the Conservative Party following the resignation of Arthur Balfour.


14 1981

The Revd Robert Bradford, Official Unionist MP for Belfast South, was assassinated by the IRA at a constituency clinic in Finaghy.


15 1991

George Otto Simms, archbishop of Dublin (1956–69), archbishop of Armagh (1969–80) andscholar who was a leading authority on the Book of Kells, died.


16 1986

Siobhán McKenna (63), internationally acclaimed stage and screen actress, died.


17 2001

The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) dropped Rule 21, which barred members of the British security forces from participation in their games.


23 1941

Derek Mahon, leading Irish lyric poet, born in Belfast of Protestant working-class parents (70 today).


24 1940

James Craig, Lord Craigavon, prime minister of Northern Ireland since 1921 and the architect of the Orange state, died.


25 1913

The Irish Volunteers—Óglaigh na hÉireann—were formed at a meeting in the Rotunda, Dublin, in response to the formation of the Ulster Volunteers earlier the same year. Eoin McNeill was appointed commander-in-chief.


28 1905

The Sinn Féin movement—the name famously coined by Máire Butler, a cousin of Irish unionist leader Sir Edward Carson—was launched by Arthur Griffith with the aim of re-establishing the independence of Ireland by withdrawing from the Westminster parliament and setting up a government in Dublin.


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