1975 Manchester bombing

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1975 Manchester bombing
Part of the Troubles
LocationManchester, England
Date27 January 1975
16:30 pm (UTC)
Targeteconomic target
Attack type
Non-fatal injuries
PerpetratorProvisional Irish Republican Army

On the 27 January 1975 the Provisional IRA exploded a time bomb outside Lewis's department store in Manchester, England.[1]

The bombing occurred at the height of an intense bombing campaign in England by the Provisional IRA's Balcombe Street Gang, who had been carrying out bombings in southern England, since the 5 October 1974 when they carried out the Guildford pub bombings killing five people (four British soldiers & a civilian) and injured 65 people. In the run up to Christmas 1974 the IRA increased the pressure of their campaign, carrying out six bombings & three shootings in London plus two other bombs were defused and also carried out bombings in Southampton and a double bombing in Bristol which injured 20 people, all of these attacks happened in the month of December 1974.[2][3]


Brendan Dowd who was a member of the IRA's Balcombe Street Gang left that London based unit in November or December 1974 and was tasked with creating a new active service unit to carry out attacks in Manchester & the midlands.[4] At around 16:30 pm a bomb exploded inside Lewsis department store injuring 26 people, most of the injuries were minor but one person was seriously injured. At the time it was the most serious IRA bombing in Manchester, not surpassed until the 1992 Manchester bombing in which over 60 people were injured.[5] The bombing in Manchester was followed by the IRA planting seven time bombs around England, five of them went off and two others were defused, several people were slightly injured by these bombs.

Other IRA incidents in Manchester[edit]

This was not the first or last bombing in Manchester.

  • On the 9 September 1973 a number of shops were bombed in Manchester.[6]
  • 6 April 1974, A IRA bomb exploded at Manchester Magistrates' Court, injuring twelve people.[7]
  • On the 7 April 1974 bombs exploded in Manchester & Birmingham, there were no injuries.[8]
  • 14 July 1974 a number of bombs exploded in Manchester.[9]
  • 16 July 1974 Two people were injured by a Provisional IRA bomb planted in Manchester.
  • 30 June 1975 A police officer was injured in a shooting by an IRA unit outside an Indian restaurant in Rusholme, Manchester.
  • 10 July 1975 IRA Volunteer & Balcombe Street Gang member Bredan Dowd was arrested in Manchester. This brought an end to his unit in Manchester.
  • 17 December 1978 the IRA carried out a number of bomb attacks around English cities including Manchester.[10]
  • 5 April 1991 A bomb at the Arndale shopping center in Manchester causes a fire, no injuries.
  • 8 December 1991 Seven incendiary devices ignited in the Arndale Centre, Manchester. No injuries.[11]
  • 3 December 1992 - See: 1992 Manchester bombing Over 60 people were injured & £10 million worth of damage caused.[12]
  • 15 June 1996 - See: 1996 Manchester bombing - This was the largest bomb the IRA exploded in England, injuring over 200 people and causing $450 million worth of damage.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "CAIN: Chronology of the Conflict 1975". cain.ulster.ac.uk. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019.
  2. ^ "Bombings (Hansard, 11 November 1975)". api.parliament.uk. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019.
  3. ^ "Prevention of Terrorism Legislation (Hansard, 4 March 1993)". api.parliament.uk. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019.
  4. ^ Moysey, Steve (Nov 19, 2013). "The Road to Balcombe Street: The IRA Reign of Terror in London". Routledge. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019 – via Google Books.
  5. ^ "CAIN: Chronology of the Conflict 1992". cain.ulster.ac.uk. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019.
  6. ^ "UPITN - September 1973: A Month in the Life · Learning on Screen". learningonscreen.ac.uk. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019.
  7. ^ https://www.gmpmuseum.co.uk/collection-item/history-of-gmp-1974-2013/
  8. ^ "SYND 7-4-74 AFTERMATH OF BOMB BLASTS IN BIRMINGHAM AND MANCHESTER". Jul 23, 2015. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019 – via YouTube.
  9. ^ "CAIN: Chronology of the Conflict 1974". Cain.ulster.ac.uk. Retrieved 2019-06-08.
  10. ^ "CAIN: Chronology of the Conflict 1978". cain.ulster.ac.uk. Retrieved Jun 8, 2019.
  11. ^ https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/high-price-paid-by-city-1107544
  12. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/december/3/newsid_2519000/2519715.stm