Trial date set over IRA bombing at Hyde Park

Trial date set over IRA bombing at Hyde Park

AN IRISH man charged with the murder of four British soldiers in the IRA's Hyde Park bombing has been given a provisional date for his trial.

John Anthony Downey, 61, of Ards, Creeslough,Co Donegal, appeared at the Old Bailey yesterday afternoon charged with the killings, as well as causing an explosion.

Mr Downey, who was arrested as he got off a plane at Gatwick airport last month, spoke only to confirm his name when he appeared by video-link at a preliminary hearing at the court.

Mr Justice Sweeney set a provisional date of November 18 for the trial and told Mr Downey he will appear in court again on September 6.

Soldiers Roy Bright, Dennis Daly, Simon Tipper and Geoffrey Young died along with several horses in the nail bomb blast on July 20, 1982.

All four men were members of the Royal Household Cavalry and were on their way to Buckingham Palace when they were killed.

Eleven people in total died in the two explosions in Hyde Park and Regents Park that day in 1982.

A further 50 people were injured by the bombs, which exploded less than two hours apart.

The bomb that Mr Downey is charged with planting was the first of the two.

In that incident, a nail bomb in a blue Austin car went off as members of the Household Cavalry made their way from their barracks in Knightsbridge to Buckingham Palace.

A second explosion in a Regent’s Park bandstand killed seven Royal Green Jackets bandsmen.