On August 14 1969, 45 years ago today, a semblance of calm descended on the North West of Ireland with the arrival of British troops into Derry and the establishment of Irish army camps on the border at Bridgend.
The arrival of the British army into Derry brought to an end the battle of the Bogside which had seen three days of vicious fighting between the residents of the Bogside and the RUC backed up by loyalist mobs.
The impact of the battle had spread far and wide with hundreds of people fleeing their homes and taking refuge in Buncrana and other places across Inishowen.
The Plaza ballroom on Buncrana’s Main Street was packed with Derry families sleeping on the floor of the hall as they sought to gain some form of refuge away from the fighting in Derry.
That Thursday also saw the sight of convoys of Irish soldiers moving through Buncrana making their way to the border to establish field hospitals to help the beleaguered Northerners.
This was the first visible response to the Taoiseach Jack Lynch’s speech on the Wednesday evening that the Irish government could ‘no longer stand by and see innocent people injured or even worse’.
This speech also led many nationalists in Derry to believe that the Irish army was about to intervene in the battle.
Any journey into Derry from Inishowen became fraught with danger as heavily armed B Specials were patrolling the Northern side of the border but many young people from here ventured in to Derry to either see what was going on or else to participate.
The impact on Inishowen and Donegal in general continued long after the fighting ended.
On August 17 a meeting was held in Letterkenny to establish a committee to co-ordinate efforts to look after refugees from the North.
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