'Battle of the
'Battle of the Bogside'
Filming of the APPRENTICE
BOYS OF DERRY parade, Derry, August 2003
Vinny Cunningham (Director), Billy Gallagher (Sound Recordist), John Peto
(Asst Producer/ Writer)
RUC in Bogside, 12 August 1969
OF THE BOGSIDE’ FOR GALWAY FILM FLEADH 2004
of the Bogside’,
a feature documentary produced by Derry-based Perfect Cousin Productions,
receives its first ever festival screening as part of the Galway Film Fleadh
this year. The film will be shown
at The Town Hall Theatre, Galway on Saturday 10th July at 5.30pm.
On 12 August 1969, the disaffected Catholic and
Nationalist population in the Bogside area of Derry, Northern Ireland took to
the streets to confront the Royal Ulster Constabulary, in the wake of a
protestant Apprentice Boys parade in the City.
The riots, which came to be known as the ‘Battle of the Bogside’,
continued for almost 3 days and saw over 1,000 people injured.
The ‘Battle’ ended when, in an unprecedented step, British troops were
deployed into Derry. This decision,
by the British Government at Westminster, was to shape the future of Northern
Ireland for over thirty years.
Through the use of previously unseen archive
footage, ‘Battle of the Bogside’ takes us behind the barricades, into
Stormont and Westminster, to reveal the inside stories surrounding the Battle
and the political response to it. Interviews with key figures from within the
Bogside, the RUC and the Northern Irish and British Governments recreate the
drama as events unfold. Many of the
contributors are speaking for the first time about those 3 days in August 1969.
The film also features exclusive broadcast clips
of ‘RADIO FREE DERRY’, a pirate radio station established by the Bogsiders
Producer/ Director, Vinny
“I’m really looking forward to the Galway screening, it’s a wonderful
festival. This production has been
a long haul, from the original conception to seeing the final film.
‘Battle of the Bogside’ is a film that I have wanted to
make for about eight years or so. Back
then a man from the Creggan in Derry gave me audio recordings that he’d made
of ‘Radio Free Derry’, the radio station set up in Derry’s Bogside in
1969. I had the idea of a film
built up around these recordings and set about raising the finance to produce
such a film. In 2002, I got the
Irish Film Board and the Northern Ireland Film and Television Commission onboard
as well as Northland Broadcast and Raw Nerve Productions in Derry.
All I needed now was a broadcaster and it was in late 2002 that BBC4, the
digital channel, commissioned the film.
“John Peto (Assistant
Producer/ Writer) from Derry’s Nerve Centre and I started work on it in early
2003 and having interviewed over 29 people from ‘both sides of the
barricades’, we began editing in October 2003.
15 weeks later, Kevin Murray (editor) and I had what we believed was an
accurate account of those incredible 3 days in August 1969, which came to be
known as the ‘Battle of the Bogside’.
Contributors include: Lord James Callaghan, Martin
McGuinness, Sir Kenneth Bloomfield, Bernadette McAliskey, Nell McCafferty,
Eamonn McCann and many others.
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