Brighton hotel bombing

1984 Margaret Thatcher murder attempt

The Brighton hotel bombing was an attack at the Grand Hotel in Brighton, England. It happened on 12 October 1984. A time bomb was planted in the hotel by the Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) member Patrick Magee. The purpose was to kill Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and her ministers, who were staying at the hotel for the Conservative Party conference.[1] . Patrick Magee, an IRA volunteer, stayed in the hotel under the pseudonym "Roy Walsh" on the weekend of 14–17 September. During his stay, he planted the bomb under the bath in his room.

Brighton hotel bombing
Part of the Troubles
The Grand Hotel on the morning after the bombing
LocationBrighton, England, UK
Coordinates50°49′17″N 0°08′50″W / 50.82139°N 0.14722°W / 50.82139; -0.14722
Date12 October 1984
02:54 (GMT)
TargetMargaret Thatcher and her cabinet
Attack type
Assassination attempt
WeaponsTime bomb
PerpetratorProvisional IRA

The bomb brought down a five-ton chimney stack, which crashed down through the floors into the basement.

Thatcher narrowly escaped injury. Five people were killed, including the Deputy Chief Whip Sir Anthony Berry, and 31 were injured. Margaret Tebbit, wife of Norman Tebbit had to use a wheelchair for the rest of her life.

At 4am Thatcher gave an impromptu interview to the BBC saying that the conference would go on as usual. Marks & Spencer opened early at 8:00 am so those who had lost their clothes in the bombing could purchase replacements.

The bombing was called "the most audacious attack on a British government since the Gunpowder Plot". It "marked the end of an age of comparative innocence. From that day forward, all party conferences in this country have become heavily defended citadels".[2]

References change

  1. Gareth Parry (10 June 1986). "Patrick Magee convicted of IRA terrorist attack". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
  2. "Brighton bombing: Daily Telegraph journalist recalls". The Telegraph. 2009-10-11. Retrieved 2023-11-27.