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Wilford admits Bloody Sunday 'destroyed' his world

Former Parachute regiment officer, Derek Wilford said Bloody Sunday "destroyed" his life. Picture by BBC
Seamus McKinney

LORD Saville has said he does not agree with the former leader of the army battalion responsible for Bloody Sunday.

A leader of the first battalion of the Parachute Regiment, the former Lieutenant Colonel Derek Wilford (88) led his soldiers into the Bogside on Bloody Sunday.

Now suffering from Parkinson’s disease and only able to move with the aid of a Zimmer frame, he still disputes the findings of the Saville Report which heavily criticised his actions and those of his soldiers. The report also exonerated the dead and wounded.

In an interview with the BBC in 2019, shown again as part of a new documentary last week, he criticised Lord Saville over his findings.

"I was there. We thought in fact that we were under attack and we actually remain convinced of that until the end of our days,” the former soldier said.

Now living abroad, Wilford also gave his thoughts on Bloody Sunday.

"It destroyed my world," he added.

However, Lord Saville told the new BBC programme he did not agree with Wilford’s account of that happened.

The British law lord said: "I wasn’t there but thousands of other people were and we talked to them."

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