The Cushendall Massacre 1922

#OnThisDay 1922 In response to the assassination of Sir Henry Wilson the day previous, ten members of the Ulster Special Constabulary (B-Specials) accompanied by  a group of British soldiers (Green Howards) left Ballymena in 4-5 trucks and drove to the catholic town of Cushendall, Antrim and shot dead three men. They also shot and wounded two others.

Despite the number of credible persons (including the widow of a QUB chemistry professor) who bore witnesses to these tragic events, the Northern Irish Government put out a totally fictitious statement in which they were ambushed by the IRA and killed four in a ‘desperate fight for their lives’. It was mentioned in Westminster by Devlin to Churchill who set up an inquiry but this completely failed. Stormont and the police authorities disagreed with the inquiry’s findings and in the end no Specials were prosecuted for this.

The Protestant government of Northern Ireland dismissed all evidence against the officers, finding no fault in the special police force and awarding no compensation to the families of the deceased’.

This case was buried the investigation under the Official Secret Act and buried it for 50 years. It was then reburied for another 25 years in 1972 given the hostilities then, and it wasn’t until 1997 that the true story came out.

The deceased were 18-year-old James McAllister, 22-year-old John Gore and 26-year-old John Hill.


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