02: Caledon Protest

Austin Currie, a Nationalist MP at Stormont, and two local men occupied a house in Caledon, Tyrone, on 20 June 1968.

The action was in protest over the allocation of the house by the local council to a nineteen-year-old unmarried Protestant, Emily Beatty, who was the secretary of a local unionist politician. A Catholic family with three young children had been evicted recently from the house next door.

After a few hours, the RUC removed Currie and his fellow-squatters. Currie said that they had squatted in protest against the allocation of the house to an unmarried woman while more than 250 people were on the waiting list in the Dungannon rural district. He also wanted to draw attention to the system of allocation which allowed an individual councillor to give houses to anyone he wished.