Body discovered in Londonderry by schoolchildren during field trip


A group of primary school children have discovered a dead body in County Londonderry, it is understood.

The body of a man was found by a group of Primary Seven pupils at Magilligan Point, to the north-east of Londonderry, during late morning.

Police cordoned off the area following the discovery, which police said was reported at about 11.40am.

A 27-strong group from the Model Primary School in the west of Londonderry city were combing the beach at the time.

The children reported it to their teacher, and the authorities were contacted.

Police said no ambulance needed to attend.

They had no further details on the dead man, such as age or where he may be from.

Primary school principal Paul Sheridan said: “I have been in contact with the relevant authorities within the Western Board and spoke to the children who were in the group that found the body.

“We also contacted all the parents of that class to tell them what had happened.

“What we have encouraged them to do is talk about the incident, let the children talk about it and share their experience, and to keep a close eye on them. None of them at this stage seem to be traumatised.

“All the children acted in a very mature manner. They came back and spoke about it very clearly.

“We looked at the positive aspect of it – what we told the children is that they have been fortunate in that they have helped bring closure to a traumatic event for some family.”

He added that they are praying for the man’s family, and said that authorities on both sides of the border have been informed about the discovery.

The area is at the mouth of Lough Foyle, and is also not far from the low-security Magilligan prison.

Johnny O’Hara, working at the area’s Point Bar, said the body was uncovered to the far side of a landmark called Martello Tower.

Magilligan falls into the area of Limavady Borough Council, and its mayor Gerry Mullan told the News Letter that the grim discovery had sent a “shock wave” through the area.

A police spokesman said he was not aware that anyone had been reported missing in that area in the last week.

The force is investigating the circumstances of his death, and said that a post-mortem is to be carried out.

Police confirmed the body of a man was discovered by members of the public at Magilligan Point on Tuesday morning.

A PSNI spokesman confirmed: ”Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of a man whose body was discovered by members of the public at Magilligan Point this morning, Tuesday 20 May.

“A post-mortem examination will be carried out to determine the cause of death.”