A former British Army soldier who is accused of murdering a man outside a chip shop has begun giving evidence in his defence.

Donal Colgan, formerly of Killarney Court, Killarney St, Dublin 1 has pleaded guilty to manslaughter but not guilty to the murder of 44-year-old David Sheridan outside Luigi's chip shop on the North Strand Road, Dublin 1 in August 2014.

His plea was not accepted by the State and he is on trial at the Central Criminal Court.

Taking the stand, the 66-year-old grandfather told defence counsel Garnet Orange SC that he was born and raised in the North Strand area of Dublin.

He said school was "okay at the start" until the Christian Brothers got involved and it became "evil".

At the age of 16, his friends advised him to join the British Army so he went to Northern Ireland and joined the Ulster Rifles.

He was sent to Gibraltar and then Libya where, during an exercise in the desert, he was "blown away" by an explosion.

He added: "When they found me the blood was pumping out of me."

By Christmas 1969 he was on his way back to Ireland aged 18.

He worked in a few places and got married in 1972 and had four children.

In 1997 that relationship broke down and he moved to Clontarf.

Mr Colgan will continue giving evidence in front of Justice Tony Hunt and a jury of eight women and three men this afternoon.