Belfast Telegraph

1984: Year that saw Brighton bomb, Band Aid and Reagan visit

By Staff Reporter

It was the year of the Brighton bombing, the first Band Aid single and a US Presidential visit to the Republic.

And today a stack of newly-released files offers a fresh insight into the key events of 1984. The previously classified papers have been released by the National Archives of Ireland under the 30-year rule.

The documents are from the Republic's archives but deal extensively with Northern Ireland. The papers reveal concerns from Mrs Thatcher about an Asian rising in Britain if nationalists were allowed to express their identity in Northern Ireland. Key events from 1984 included the IRA bombing of the Conservative Party conference at the Grand Hotel in Brighton. In Belfast, Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams was shot in a loyalist gun attack. And in the Republic, US President Ronald Reagan paid a visit.

Files relating to Northern Ireland and the UK, held by the Public Record Office in Belfast and National Archives in London, will be made public early next week.

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