Deal bombing 25th anniversary remembered

image captionWhen the Marines left the town in 1996, they promised to return each summer

Thousands of people have attended a concert to mark 25 years since an IRA bomb killed 11 Royal Marine bandsmen in Deal, Kent.

A massive blast at the Royal Marine School of Music in 1989 killed 10 bandsmen and injured 22, one of whom died a month later.

The anniversary is on 22 September, but when the Marines left the town in 1996, they promised to return each summer.

They pay their respects and play on the memorial bandstand every year.

The bomb flattened a three-storey accommodation block and caused widespread damage to nearby homes.

No-one has ever been convicted over the deaths.

'Gave their lives'

Royal Marines Band Portsmouth and Royal Marines Band Collingwood performed a concert, marched and took part in an act of remembrance and the rededication of the bandstand.

Organiser Bill Butler said: "It's only because of that incident really that we have this regular, annual memorial concert every year.

"It's really cemented the relationship between the people of Deal and the band service.

"And it gives the band service something to come back for every year and the town the opportunity to look forward to welcoming them back.

"And that's down to those 11 young men who so gallantly gave their lives on that day."

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