Introduction and Thanks

As the caption said this Army mural imitated Republican murals, although the caption got the translation wrong: this should read, “Army of the Green Howards”.

British Army sign in Newry in the 1980s, but with a bullet hole. This was an official British Army photograph.
By Permission of The Imperial War Museum (CT828)

In their own words eight veterans each from TOM and the British Army tell of their lives, motives and reflections on ‘The Troubles’.

They say why the joined their respective organisations, what the highs and lows of their experience were, what they think now of what they did and what their respective organisation achieved.

In a unique coming together, as part of the research for this exhibition, three former Toms and three members of the TOM met and discussed the conflict at the Peace Centre of the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace in Warrington. There, they answered questions from East London school children who wanted to know, ‘Ireland – What was that about? The children, who also attended school workshops on Northern Ireland and related history, subsequently produced a video of their encounter with ‘vets’ of both sides, which also features in the exhibition.

While the exhibition reveals hidden memories and voices with strongly held opinions and a contested history, it is also an attempt at mutual understanding and post-conflict reconciliation.

The exhibition was part funded by the Big Lottery through the Museums and Libraries Archives Council and their ‘Their Past, Your Future’ programme.

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