Saturday 9 May 2020


The Provisional IRA murdered a British soldier in a bomb attack in west Belfast.  The lance-corporal was one of two soldiers providing cover to foot patrols in the republican Turf Lodge district.  They had gone to the top floor of a three-storey block of flats when the booby-trap device exploded, killing Lance-Corporal Andrew Webster instantly.

The IRA exploited the fact that soldiers frequently used the block of flats as a vantage point.  The device was planted in the roof space of the top floor and designed to explode downwards on top of the soldiers.  LCpl Webster's colleague was injured, although not seriously.  Following the explosion snipers fired a number of high velocity rounds into the top floor.  It was not clear how the device was triggered, although remote control was not ruled out.

At the time of the blast a nursery school was in progress on the ground floor of the same block.  The toddlers, aged five and under, were showered with dust and plaster, but there were no injuries.  The children were led out of the building crying and screaming.

LCpl Andrew Webster

Lance-Corporal Andrew Webster was 20 and from St Helens in Merseyside.  Known as Andy, he served with the 1st King's Regiment and was due home on leave a week later.  He was the third member of the regiment to be killed during their tour.