October 2008

Published Date: 17 October 2008
By Staff reporter

An appeal has been made to open up a network of secret passages under Derry’s historic walls.

The fabled tunnels are said to have been used by Irish Chieftain, Owen Roe O’Neill to negotiate with the Parliamentarians during the `forgotten’ siege of Derry in 1649.

Now, centuries after the passages were sealed, there have been calls to open them up as a major tourism draw to the city.

Former Navy Commander Peter Campbell, of The Honourable The Irish Society – who can trace his family history to the architect of Derry’s walls in the 1620s (Peter Benson) – has appealed for the passages to be promoted as part of the city’s rich heritage.

“What I do think is we ought to open them up because everyone loves a secret passage. I think it would be terrific have it opened up – it would have great tourist potential.”

A spokesperson for the Northern Ireland Environment Agency’s Built Heritage department, which has guardianship of the walls, confirmed that there were many reports of “siege tunnels”.

However, she explained that many are in “private ownership and in variable condition”, making it “difficult” to open them to the public.

However, the NIEA is currently looking at making one tunnel more publicly accessible – the Sally-port which runs through the walls in the area of St. Columb’s Cathedral.

“NIEA and Derry City Council have recently been giving consideration as to how this important part of the history of the walls can be made more accessible for the public and would hope to address this issue in the near future.”

The full article contains 271 words and appears in Journal Friday DER Edition newspaper.

I reckon it would be quite interesting for visitors to the City to see these tunnels, or at least as much as physically possible, in the same way the underground carverns and tunnels are open to the public in Edinburgh. As far as ownership is concerned that hasn’t stopped government agencies taking over or buying the land or property and there is legislation in place to faciltate that.

It really comes down to money. I don’t think that money, or lack of it, should prevent at least some sizeable amounts of these important historical passageways from being available as a tourist attraction. I also think that the money could be recuperated over time and may, with good management, become a good investment.

I suspect the NIEA just can’t be arsed.

BBC Link

Sarah “I can see Russia from here” Palin is not only a daft bimbo but it seems she’s a vindictive little cow as well.

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin is guilty of abuse of power, according to a probe by the state legislature.

Mrs Palin was accused of sacking a senior state official, Walter Monegan, in connection with a family feud.

She allegedly fired him for refusing to sack a state trooper who was in a bitter custody battle with her sister…

The reelers at the republican campaign aren’t any brighter either. They are telling us that the investigation is politically motivated.

“The following document will prove Walt Monegan’s dismissal was a result of his insubordination and budgetary clashes with Governor Palin and her administrators,” campaign officials wrote. “Trooper Wooten is a separate issue.”

The 21-page report suggests that the allegations against Mrs Palin stem from a conspiracy planned by a former campaign opponent of hers, Andrew Halcro, and Mr Wooten.

“It is tragic that a false story hatched by a blogger over drinks with Trooper Wooten led the legislature to allocate over $100,000 of public money to be spent in what has become a politically-driven investigation,” it concludes.

There’s a brace of problems there though that will make their efforts unravel; 1. The investigation is no longer an investigation. It’s a verdict from the state legislature. 2. The investigation started before she was picked as a running mate…

The investigation into the affair began before Mr McCain selected Mrs Palin as his running mate in August.

This might well be the “October Scandal” that apparently hits US election campaigns that severely dent the front runner’s campaign or finish off the chasing campaign’s quest for the white house.


Blinking charlie! McCain could surely not have picked a worse running mate. You’d think he was actually trying to lose the election. I’m almost feeling sorry for the old geezer. He’s far from being the worst Republican candidate there’s ever been.

Way back in in late January I proclaimed Barack Obama as the next the president of the US of A. The thing that clinched it for me was when Ted Kennedy endorsed his nomination. A Nomination that the Clinton camp was desperately hoping for. He was doing alright without the endorsement in my opinion but that clinched it so I went on record and said that he would be in the white house within the year.

Events since have only strengthened my position. I believe that Obama will be better for the world as a whole and better for Americans.

Having just heard Palin going on about relationships with other countries I thought to myself, maybe if she left her own country for a spell she could comment.

What a fucking bimbo.

Baraks endorsement by me and Ted

Baraks endorsement by me and Ted

Celtic Quick News Match report BBC Match Report

Well what can I say. Sheer fucking brilliant and it would be disrespectful to Hamilton to say the opposition wasn’t up to much. The fact is we scored 4 goals that the huns would be raving about. Lets see how they get on at St Mirren. Remember them? That’s the team rangers tried to avoid playing because the state of the art bigot-dome was “waterlogged” 😀

Things are beginning to come together at just the right time, never mind our European woes, we’ve been through tougher times than this in the Euro tournaments and came out alright. Lets just concentrate on one game at a time and things will sort themselves out.


This film, directed by Steve McQueen, took me by total surprise. I found it disturbing and compelling in equal measure. There is little meaningful dialogue until Bobby and a Priest, who in my mind represented many of the different Catholic clergy that happened to visit Bobby during the protest, had a lengthy debate about what Bobby was about to do. The rights and wrongs and even the morality which Bobby rightly scoffed.

The debate was a relief from the disturbing aspects of the film prior to and after the discussion and gave some insight into what drives a man to starve himself to death as a last recourse to protest. The debate itself was an interesting one and well worth viewing the film for it alone. We are left in no doubt that Bobby intended to see his fast to the ultimate end in the face of British intransigence.

The film steers clear of political events going on outside the H-Blocks and even the negotiations going on in the camp. Aside from subtle hints at milestones in the protest. I had to watch it twice in case I missed any.

It leaves you in a state of shock at the shear brutality of the regime the blanketmen had to endure and believe me, it wasn’t poetic licence.  It also shows the powder keg atmosphere in the Blocks and the pressure some of the staff were under, though it also shows the the inhumanity some men are capable of under that kind of pressure and indeed how some can take great delight in inflicting pain and suffering on their fellow human beings, without any kind of presssure at all.

The acting was excellent and all in all, a briliantly made film and a must see. Even for the faint hearted.