The Massacre - Chronology

Without warning the British Army opened fire from the direct of the Henry Taggart Army base. The shooting was aimed directly at the gathering. In the panic people dispersed in all directions. Many people took refuge in a field directly opposite the army base. The army continued to fire and intensified their attack on this field.

Noel Phillips was shot in the back side. An injury that was later described in his autopsy as a flesh wound. As he lay crying for help, Joan Connolly, a mother of 8 went to his aid. Eye witnesses heard Joan call out to Noel saying "It's alright son, I’m coming to you".

In her attempt to aid Noel, Joan was shot in the face. When the gun fire stopped Noel Phillips, Joan Connolly, Joseph Murphy and many others lay wounded. Daniel Teggart, a father of 14, lay dead having been shot 14 times.

A short time later a British Army vehicle left the Henry Taggart Army base and entered the field. A solider exited the vehicle, and to the dismay of the local eye witnesses, executed the already wounded Noel Phillips by shooting him once behind each ear with a hand gun.

Soldiers then began lifting the wounded and dead and throwing them into the back of the vehicle. Joseph Murphy, who had been shot once in the leg, was also lifted along with the other victims and taken to the Henry Taggart Army base. Those lifted, including Joseph Murphy, were severely beaten. Soldiers brutally punched and kicked the victims. Soldiers jumped off bunks on top of victims and aggravated the victims' existing wounds by forcing objects in to them. Mr Murphy was shot at close range with a rubber bullet into the wound he first received in the field. Mr Murphy died three weeks later from his injuries.

Joan Connolly, who had not been lifted by the soldiers when they first entered the field, lay wounded where she had been shot. Eye witnesses claimed Joan cried out for help for many hours. Joan was eventually removed from the field around 2:30am on 10th August. Autopsy reports state that Joan, having been repeatedly shot, bled to death.


10th August 1971

Eddie Doherty, a father of two from the St James' area of West Belfast, had visited his elderly parents in the Turf Lodge area, on the evening of Tuesday 10th August to check on their safety during the ongoing unrest. He was making his way home along the Whiterock road, as he approached the West Rock area he noticed a barricade which had been erected by local people in an attempt to restrict access to the British Army.


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