Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 25 December 2014

Relatives say Omagh film has come too soon

Watergate Street in Navan yesterday where a film on the Omagh bombing is being shot. The film is financed by the Irish Film Board, RTE and Channel 4" >
Watergate Street in Navan yesterday where a film on the Omagh bombing is being shot. The film is financed by the Irish Film Board, RTE and Channel 4

A TYRONE woman who lost friends in the Omagh bomb today told of her distress after stumbling upon film-makers in Navan recreating the atrocity.


A TYRONE woman who lost friends in the Omagh bomb today told of her distress after stumbling upon film-makers in Navan recreating the atrocity.

The Omagh woman, who did not wish to be named, was shopping in the Co Meath town at the weekend when she came across the set of the new RTE/Channel 4 drama.

The aftermath of the 1998 explosion, which claimed 29 lives and two unborn babies, is being recreated by production company Tiger Aspect for a feature-length drama.

The woman said she was appalled when she discovered what was going on.

And she said the drama would only "open up old wounds" for relatives of the dead and residents of the town.

"I just happened to be in Navan and I came across what looked like a movie set," she said.

"I recognised Omagh street names and then I saw the car. It all looked too real.

"I asked someone what was going on and was told they were making a drama about the Omagh bomb.

"I'm from Omagh and I can't tell you how angry and upset this made me. I'd heard nothing about this beforehand and couldn't believe it when they told me.

"It was totally eerie. Everything looked the same as it did that day. I was in Omagh when the bomb went off and I lost people that I knew.

"I can't see how this drama could help anyone's healing. It's far too early to be doing something like this."

Entitled Omagh, the film is being made with the co-operation of some of the victims' families.

However Laurence Rush, who lost his wife Elizabeth in the bomb, expressed reservations about it.

"For me personally, it's far too soon for this," he said.

"I want justice, so this drama is really immaterial to me. I'm not that interested in it at all.

"It's far too near the hurt I'm still feeling over the loss of my wife. Nothing has been resolved, regardless of what this film has to say.

"I still have a lot of paths to follow where justice for my wife is concerned and I will not be watching this drama."

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