The story behind an iconic Troubles’ photo

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“Analysis: how Colman Doyle’s 1973 photo of a woman IRA volunteer in Belfast became one of most iconic shots of the Troubles

January 1973 was an eventful month. It saw both the UK and Ireland joining the EEC. It also saw Loyalist paramilitaries bringing the Northern conflict to the streets of Dublin, where a car bomb exploded in Sackville Place, killing Thomas Douglas and injuring 17 others..

The car used in the Loyalist bombing that detonated in Dublin had been hijacked at Agnes Street, just off Crumlin Road in North Belfast. One day in 1973, photographer Colman Doyle passed by Agnes Street on his way from the Ardoyne towards the city centre: “I heard someone firing shots and then I saw this woman. She was standing behind a corner, still holding that gun but I only managed to take the photo after she had fired.””

Article by Dieter Reinisch (Central European University) – RTÉ – 16 June 2020

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