Northern Ireland news

Terry Wogan's role in north's peace process recalled

Broadcaster Terry Wogan
Staff Reporter

Terry Wogan's bizarre role in the peace process was recalled yesterday during a radio interview with his close friend Fr Brian D'Arcy.

Fr D'Arcy, who visited Wogan at his home in England last week, was asked on RTÉ's Liveline about a 2003 newspaper article which suggested then Taoiseach Charlie Haughey tipped him off about possible IRA talks.

The Evening Standard said Wogan told a reporter that Mr Haughey sent a helicopter to pick up the Limerick-born presenter.

"He pulled me a pint at the bar in his drawing room and he told me: 'The boys are ready to talk'," Wogan said.

"I saw a harp inscribed by the boys from Long Kesh and I knew what he meant. But why did he choose me to start the peace process? I'm not a politician."

Fr D'Arcy said although he had never heard the story before, Wogan was known for his honesty.

"If Terry said it then that did happen because he wasn't the kind of guy who made up stories along the line," he said.

He added: "There were so many things happened to him along the way. He walked a very, very difficult line politically."

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