source: The Express & Star
published: 18 November 2020
21 people were killed in the bombings in 1974. Here is a timeline of events related to the Birmingham pub bombings in 1974:
– November 14 1974: Bomber James McDade, 28, a lieutenant in the Birmingham IRA, is blown up planting explosives at the Coventry telephone exchange.
– November 21 1974: Fearing violent disorder between pro and anti-IRA factions, 1,600 West Midlands Police officers are deployed to Coventry and Birmingham airport for McDade’s funeral transportation to Belfast. It leaves just 15 officers on duty at Birmingham’s two city centre stations that night – among them just six uniformed constables.
– 8.11pm: Ian Cropper, a telephonist at the Birmingham Post and Mail, receives a call. A male Irish voice tells him: “There is a bomb planted in the Rotunda and there is a bomb in New Street… in the tax office. The code word is Double X”. The line goes dead and Mr Cropper calls the warning in to police.
– 8.14pm: The central police control room notifies officers on the ground in Birmingham city centre to head to the Rotunda and New Street.
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