1. ITV Report

MP ‘will not remove office sign with names of IRA men’

The sign at the McNulty-Magorrian Advice Centre. Photo: UTV

South Down MP Chris Hazzard has insisted he won't take down a sign at his constituency office in Castlewellan with the names two IRA men.

The Sinn Féin representative was responding after victims of IRA terror reacted in fury.

Sammy Heenan, who was 12 when his dad was shot dead a few miles from Castlewellan, branding the signage “repugnant” and “obscene”.

He said: “We know the outcry there would be if there was a unionist constituency office named after two dead loyalist terrorists.

“It would be absolutely abhorrent and it would make national news and I’m glad this is making national news to draw attention to the hypocrisy and double-standards of the republican movement.”

For Sammy Heenan it's too much to take. Credit: UTV

The sign features the names of Peter McNulty and Paul Magorrian.

Mr McNulty, who was 47, was killed when when a bomb exploded before it could be used in an attack on Castlewellan RUC station in 1972.

Mr Magorrian, who was 21, died after being shot by the Army in August 1974.

Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald cut the ribbon and officially opened the constituency office just a few weeks ago.

It has now sparked fury from some who question how this can be a comfortable space for all constituents from all backgrounds.

DUP MLA Jim Wells said: “Sinn Féin can do whatever they like with their building, but once you become a publically-funded building, meant to serve the entire community, that’s where it goes beyond the pale.

“Chris Hazzard, when he was elected in 2017 said he’d work for everybody, you can’t work for everybody and invite them into a memorial to terrorism.”

Chris Hazzard said the sign is not coming down. Credit: UTV

While some victims of IRA terror are calling for the signs to come down, Sinn Féin say that will not be happening.

Chris Hazzard said: “Sinn Féin have had an advice centre in Castlewellan for decades now and those two families are widely respected in the area.

“People from right across south Down come into my office day and daily.”