Security alert disrupts crowds leaving match attended by President

Security Alert Disrupts Crowds Leaving Match Attended By President
President Michael D Higgins had been at the match at the Brandywell Stadium in Derry. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho
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By Rebecca Black, PA

A security alert has disrupted crowds leaving a Derry City football match.

President Michael D Higgins and Northern Ireland Secretary Chris Heaton Harris were among those who attended the President’s Cup match to see Derry City triumph over Shamrock Rovers at the Brandywell Stadium on Friday evening.


However, the discovery of a suspicious object in the Celtic Court area close to the stadium caused what SDLP leader and Foyle MP Colum Eastwood described as “significant disruption” for local residents and those travelling from the match.

“Elderly residents and children have had their night turned upside down as police attempt to make the area safe,” Mr Eastwood said.

“It is particularly frustrating that local people and Derry City fans are experiencing this disruption as President Higgins visits for this evening’s President’s Cup match.


“I would appeal to everyone in the area to follow the directions of local police. SDLP representatives will continue to liaise with emergency services as they seek to make the area safe as quickly as possible.”

Sinn Féin MLA Padraig Delargy condemned the security alert.

He said: “This has caused huge disruption for elderly residents and thousands of fans attending the Derry City match at the Brandywell tonight.

“No one wants to see this type of disruption, especially on a cold winter night.


“I would urge people to follow advice from the Police, and avoid the area while this security alert continues.”

A police spokesperson said officers attended the scene of a security alert in the Celtic Court area of Derry following the discovery of a suspicious object.

They urged motorists and pedestrians to avoid the area.

“There is an ongoing security alert on the Lone Moor Road area of the Brandywell and Police have closed off the area,” they said.

A Northern Ireland Office spokesperson said: “We do not comment on security matters.”

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