22nd February 2023
The third day of the Springhill inquest concerned Rule 17 submissions. Statements and depositions were read into the proceedings. These were mostly the contemporaneous depositions and statements from the next of kin and other civilian eyewitnesses who are now deceased.
Several of the depositions describe the Springhill and Westrock area as being under ‘sustained gunfire’ on the 9th July1972. Depositions stated that most of the gunfire came from the British Army military base in Corry’s Timberyard. Other statements tell of residents trying to retrieve the bodies of those who had been shot. Some statements gave an account of the emergency services being called and ambulances arriving into the area to attend to those who had been shot and wounded or in some cases those who had been killed. Depositions in some instances referred to residents having to take refuge in houses and not being able to leave their home due to the level of gunfire that was taking place. The intensity of the gunfire was such that bullets were being fired into the bedrooms of houses according to one eyewitness.
Depositions from the next of kin of the five victims, who had the heartbreaking task of identifying their loved ones, were also read into the inquest proceedings. Statements were from ambulance drivers who attended the scene, medical staff at the Royal Victoria Hospital (RVH) and a doctor who was called to examine one of the bodies of the deceased victims were referred to as well.
The inquest continues on Monday 27th February 2023 at 11.00am