Massereene Barracks

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Massereene Barracks
Antrim, Northern Ireland
Platform at Lough Neagh - geograph.org.uk - 759105.jpg
Platform on Lough Neagh which was almost certainly used for naval training purposes
Massereene Barracks is located in Northern Ireland
Massereene Barracks
Massereene Barracks
Location within Northern Ireland
Coordinates54°43′18″N 6°13′51″W / 54.7216°N 6.2307°W / 54.7216; -6.2307Coordinates: 54°43′18″N 6°13′51″W / 54.7216°N 6.2307°W / 54.7216; -6.2307
TypeBarracks
Site information
OwnerMinistry of Defence
Operator British Army
Site history
Built1942
In use1942-2010
Garrison information
Occupants3rd Infantry Brigade

Massereene Barracks is a former military installation in Antrim, Northern Ireland.

History[edit]

The site was acquired from Clotworthy Skeffington, 11th Viscount Massereene for a shooting range in 1893.[1] In 1942, during the Second World War, the Admiralty commissioned a torpedo factory there such that Mark 8 torpedoes could be manufactured in the factory and then tested on Lough Neagh.[2] After the War the site became the Royal Naval Armaments Depot Antrim.[3] 33 Independent Field Squadron Royal Engineers arrived at the barracks in July 1974[4] and, after 33 Independent Field Squadron was absorbed into 25 Regiment Royal Engineers, that regiment took over the barracks in 1992.[5]

The site was subsequently handed over to the Royal Marines and, from 1993, it was used as a base for the Royal Marine vessels Grey Wolf and Grey Fox which were deployed in counter terrorism and police operations on Lough Neagh and inshore waterways in Northern Ireland;[6] the barracks were the subject of considerable further development in 1998.[7]

The site then passed to the British Army and became the home of 38 Engineer Regiment in July 2008.[8] On 7 March 2009, two off-duty British soldiers of 38 Engineer Regiment were shot dead outside the barracks.[9][10] Two other soldiers and two civilian delivery men were also shot and wounded during the attack. An Irish republican paramilitary group, the Real IRA, claimed responsibility.[11][12] After 38 Engineer Regiment moved to RAF Aldergrove in 2010,[13] the barracks were demolished and the site sold to Randox Laboratories in December 2013 for use as a science park.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Shooting range on the Massereene Estate". Hansard. 17 March 1893. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  2. ^ "Antrim". Down Memory Lane. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  3. ^ "Torpedo Production and Test Facility, Antrim". The Second World War in Northern Ireland. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  4. ^ "33 Squadron". British Army units 1945 on. Retrieved 3 August 2017.
  5. ^ "25 Regiment - 2 Division Regiment". British Army units 1945 on. Retrieved 3 August 2017.
  6. ^ "Are Royal Navy's aging Gibraltar assets fit for purpose?". Panorama. 17 November 2014. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  7. ^ "British Forces (Northern Ireland)". Hansard. 3 November 1998. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  8. ^ "38 Engineer Regiment". British Army units 1945 on. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  9. ^ "Two soldiers shot dead in attack on Antrim barracks". The Irish Times. 8 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-08.
  10. ^ "How the barracks attack unfolded". BBC News. 8 March 2009. Archived from the original on 9 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-08.
  11. ^ "Two die in 'barbaric' Army attack". BBC News. 8 March 2009. Retrieved 28 March 2010.
  12. ^ "'Real IRA was behind army attack". BBC News. 8 March 2009. Retrieved 28 March 2010.
  13. ^ "Massereene army barracks sold off". Belfast Telegraph. 23 December 2013. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  14. ^ "Randox Science Park hosts Secretary of State". Ministry of Defence. 21 November 2016. Retrieved 15 April 2017.