1998 Banbridge bombing

The 1998 Banbridge bombing was the explosion of a car bomb in the town of Banbridge in County Down, Northern Ireland on 1 August 1998. Thirty-three civilians and two Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officers were injured in the attack in a busy shopping street that was later claimed by the Real Irish Republican Army (RIRA), a dissident Irish republican group.[1]

1998 Banbridge bombing
Part of the Troubles
Banbridge is located in Northern Ireland
Banbridge (Northern Ireland)
LocationBanbridge, Northern Ireland
Date1 August 1998 (UTC)
TargetUnionist owned businesses
Attack type
Car bomb
PerpetratorReal IRA

The bomb containing 500 lb (230 kg) of explosives was inside a red Vauxhall Cavalier parked on Newry Street.[2] A 20-minute telephone warning was given allowing the police to clear the town centre and potentially avoiding many fatalities, although the warning was "inadequate" and still led to many injuries.[3] The bomb severely damaged the heart of the town and shops in the area, causing an estimated £3.5 million of damage.[4][5]

At the time it was the most damaging bomb attack since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in April. Two weeks later, the Real IRA would carry out the infamous Omagh bombing. Shortly afterwards, they had a ceasefire.

The town was targeted previously that year by the Continuity IRA in an attempted car bomb on 6 January 1998, which was safely defused after a warning.[6] Major bombings also occurred there in 1991 and 1982.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Melaugh, Dr Martin. "CAIN: Chronology of the Conflict 1998". cain.ulst.ac.uk.
  2. ^ "BBC News - Latest News - Arson attacks follow bombing". news.bbc.co.uk.
  3. ^ "IRA dissidents are suspected of being behind car-bomb blast in Banbridge". The Irish Times.
  4. ^ "Bombed Banbridge is back in business". Belfasttelegraph – via www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk.
  5. ^ "Readers recall awful day bombers targeted town". 9 August 2013.
  6. ^ "Banbridge Bomb Incident (Hansard, 19 January 1998)". api.parliament.uk.