Bomb horror for ‘School of Rock’
by Linda McGrory
SOME 600 school children and their parents from
Inishowen were still reeling today after being
caught up in the two bomb attacks in Derry.
Students from Moville Community College had
travelled to the Millennium Forum theatre where the
school was staging a rock musical last night.
Two bombs exploded during the performance, one at
Foyle Street and the other at Strand Road. The
Millennium Forum, located in the city centre near
Foyle Street, was subsequently caught within one of
the police cordons.
About half the parents who had travelled over the
border to see their children perform in the show had
parked their cars in a multi-storey car park at
The car park was subsequently closed off for the
night by police. Parents today praised the
quick-thinking of school principal, Anthony Doogan,
who allowed the show to go on while, during the
performance, organised for buses to travel from
Donegal to collect the stranded families. Parents
whose cars were not locked in for the night arranged
vehicle pooling to take others home.
Mary McCauley, whose teen daughter Kate was
performing in the 'The Only Way is Rock' musical,
was there with husband Leo and their four other
"Anthony Doogan played
a blinder. The show went ahead as planned and it was
only after the finale that he got up on the stage
and told people what had happened. By then he had
everything under control and alternative
arrangements were in place for people to get home,"
said Ms McCauley. "He managed to calm down what
could otherwise have been a very panicked
Mr Doogan thanked parents for their appreciation but
said he was only doing what principals do in their
Moville Community College Principal,
"I am well used to
co-ordinating a group of 500 or more people and I
have a lot of experience organising the logistics
for that kind of numbers.
"The Millennium Forum had received no instructions
from the police so we made a decision that the show
would go on.
"I just analysed the situation and came up with a
solution I thought was most feasible for everyone at
the time." Mr Doogan said he wanted to stress what
was good about the night.
"More than 50 of our students put on a marvellous
show and I pay tribute to them and their teachers
who have worked so hard for months.
"What our students and staff achieved was a
tremendous celebration of all that is good in music
and in working together.” The performers’ after-show
party has been postponed to another date.