Newry Civil Rights March, January 1969

Newry Civil Rights March, January 1969

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Production 11/01/1969


10min 53sec


mute, sound



black and white


Funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland under the Archiving Scheme 2


Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, Department for Communities, ITV, UTV Archive

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In Newry, a march organised by the Newry Civil Rights Committee descends into chaos. The march route through the town had originally been approved but late the night before, the march was re-routed and prevented from going through the Sugar Island area of the town (seen here with the shop fronts boarded up although the march never reached this area). The RUC blocked the route at the corner of Monaghan Street and Merchants Quay and despite the efforts of the organisers, people, who had gathered but were not involved in the march, engaged in riotous behaviour.

The film shows the RUC searching vehicles ahead of the march and also shows the aftermath of the violence with burnt out police vehicles at the RUC station in Newry.

The events in Newry marked a turning point in the history of the Civil Rights movement in Northern Ireland. It was the first time the police had been attacked by the public and there is contention as to why the police blocked the march at this point and who instigated the violence. 


An Ulster Television Production.



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