September 22

Published in On this Day listing

  • 1920 Five RIC officers and a Black and Tan were killed in an IRA ambush at Rineen, Co. Clare. The towns of Ennistymon, Lahinch and Miltown Malbay were later attacked in reprisal and at least five civilians were killed.
  • 1970 Charles J. Haughey, Captain James Kelly, Albert Luykx and John Kelly were charged in the Central Criminal Court with conspiring to illegally import arms and ammunition. The jury was discharged on 29 September.
  • 1989 Ten military bandsmen were killed and a further 22 injured when an IRA bomb exploded in the barracks of the Royal Marines School of Music in Deal, Kent.
  • 1989 Nine British army bandsmen and one civilian were killed when an IRA bomb exploded at the Royal Marine Barracks in Deal, Kent.
  • 1918 Hanz Scholl, founding member of the White Rose resistance movement in Nazi Germany, who was executed in February 1943 along with his sister, Sophie, born in Forchtenberg.
  • 1846 The luxury liner SS Great Britain, en route on her fifth voyage from Liverpool to New York, ran aground on the sands of Dundrum Bay, Co. Down, when her captain mistook the new St John’s lighthouse for the Calf light on the Isle of Man. Designed by the great Isambard Kingdom Brunel and launched in 1843 to serve the burgeoning transatlantic passenger trade, she was the first liner to be made entirely of iron and powered by a propeller. Stuck in the sands, her 180 passengers, which included a girls’ choir en route to a concert tour in the USA, along with her 130-strong crew, were safely evacuated to shore with local help.

    It would be eleven months before a successful salvage operation was mounted to rescue her. Under Brunel’s personal supervision she was stripped of what remained of her engines and everything else of any weight and her hulk towed back to Liverpool. And so began her best years. Sold in order to defray the cost of her salvage, she was refurbished with an extra deck and in 1852 made her first voyage to Melbourne with 630 emigrants after which, over almost a thirty-year period, she conveyed thousands from these islands to those shores.

    In recent years, a team from the University of Bristol and the SS Great Britain Trust has identified the exact spot on Tyrella beach where she floundered—close to Ballykinler, where Ireland’s first mass internment camp would be constructed some 75 years later. Today, an upmarket restaurant in nearby Newcastle bears her forty cigars-a-day designer’s name and the old anchor displayed at South Promenade in the town is believed to have come from her.


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