John Barnard Jenkins

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John Barnard Jenkins (born 1933, Cardiff) was a non-commissioned officer in the British Army's Royal Army Medical Corps, who, around 1963, effectively took over the leadership of Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru.

He was behind the bombing campaign to try to disrupt the Investiture of The Prince of Wales in Caernarfon Castle on 1 July 1969. On 30 June 1969, the evening before the investiture, two members of MAC, Alwyn Jones and George Taylor, were killed when a bomb they had been intending to place outside Government offices in Abergele exploded. Although many believe the actual target was the railway line at Abergele, a claim that has always been denied by the leadership of MAC. In actuality, at the time the bomb was being placed, the Royal Train had already passed Abergele and was parked at a guarded remote site. On the day of the investiture, two other bombs were planted in Caernarfon, one in the local police constable's garden which exploded as the 21-gun salute was fired. Another was planted in an iron forge near the castle but failed to go off (this bomb was later exploded as a child stood on the bomb as they retrieved a ball). The final bomb was placed on Llandudno Pier and was designed to stop the Royal Yacht Britannia from docking; this too failed to explode.

In November 1969, following a tip-off, John Jenkins was arrested, and in April 1970 he was convicted of eight offences involving explosives and sentenced to ten years' imprisonment. In a BBC2 interview shown on 4 July 2009, John Jenkins repeated his assertion that the bombs were never planted nor timed to hurt people but just to disrupt the ceremony.

Whilst in prison, he gained a degree in social sciences from the Open University.

Bibliography[edit]

* Wyn Thomas (2013) Hands Off Wales ISBN 978-1-84851-669-4