Omagh Community Youth Choir bringing a voice to peace 25 years after bombing

As Omagh marks 25 years since the bomb that killed 29 people, the Omagh Community Youth Choir is also marking 25 years since it was set up.

The choir, which is led by Daryl Simpson from the town, performed at a memorial service on Sunday to remember those who died in what was Northern Ireland's worst terrorist atrocity.

"I felt helpless and thought what can I do help allieviate some of this pain that was very evident in our town," said Daryl.

"I decided to start the Omagh Community Youth Choir to bring both sides of the community together and bring young people together more importantly as a symbol of hope," he added.

When they were formed, the choir recorded the title track to the Omagh Fund CD 'Across the Bridge of Hope' which included songs from the likes of Sinead O'Connor, Enya and Van Morrison.

The choir has performed all across the world including at the likes of Glastonbury, the Royal Variety Performance and in Washington DC.

Ahead of Sunday's service, UTV joined the choir at their rehearsals with current and former members in attendance.

"Singing our song today, it brings back memories of being back then and feeling my house shake when the bomb happpened," said Aisling Johnston, a founding member.

"Those first few days after not knowing what was going to happen. I do believe the music and the choir has played a pivotal role in changing people's outlook," she said.

Some of the choir members were not even born at the time of the bomb.

"It means the coming together of both communities. My family have always thought that it was very important for both communities to come together," said Kodi Sayers, one of the choir's members.

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