Harold Andrews (b.1943) and Esther Andrews (b. 1949)

Harold Andrews (b.1943) and Esther Andrews (b. 1949)


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The Andrews family farm is situated a half mile from the Border between Fermanagh and Monaghan, and the family has farmed there for many generations. Esther Ritchie grew up in Cootehill, Co. Cavan and she recalls that her cousin, RUC officer Const. Samuel Roulston, was killed by a car bomb in 1970. At the age of eighteen, Harold Andrews joined the B Specials and, prior to his marriage would travel to Esther’s home in Cavan, knowing that the IRA were monitoring his movements. He resigned from the security force following his marriage in 1974. In May 1977 local Protestant shop-keeper, Douglas Deering, was shot at his business premises, and also a bomb was placed in the Church Hall in Clough where Harold and Esther would socialise.

Esther recalls the day in April 1986, when two members of the IRA placed a controlled explosive device under a culvert at a bus stop directly across from the Andrews driveway. On that day, Esther had brought her children to board the bus, as had the neighbouring parents. Early on the following morning, shots were fired which echoed around the house, and it transpired that the security forces had discovered the device. IRA member, Seamus McElwaine, was shot dead and his colleague, Sean Lynch, was arrested. The security forces recommended that the Andrews family relocate for their own safety, but Harold refused to consider this option, as the family had farmed the land at Rosslea for many generations.

This collection, carried out by Irish Life and Lore on behalf of Cavan County Library Service, is funded by the EU Special EU Programmes Body Peace IV fund under the objective to build positive relations with people from different backgrounds and communities to support peace and reconciliation.

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Additional information



Audio series:

Voices of the Troubles

Download time limit:

48 hours

Number of files:


Product ID:


Recorded by:

Maurice O'Keeffe – Irish Life and Lore

Date Recorded




Location of Recording

Rosslea Co Fermanagh