The father of one of the two young boys killed in the Warrington bomb has said their deaths were “not in vain”.
Colin Parry was speaking at a memorial event to mark the 25th anniversary of the deaths of his son Tim Parry, 12, and Jonathan Ball, three – killed when two IRA bombs hidden inside litter bins exploded on March 20, 1993.
Hundreds of people – including the Princess Royal, Princess Anne – gathered in Warrington’s Bridge Street to hold a minute’s silence at 12.27pm – the exact time the bombs went off killing the two boys and injuring more than 50 shoppers in the English town.
Mr Parry told the News Letter following the service: “The reason we say their deaths weren’t in vain is because of the charitable foundation and the peace centre which both carry the boys’ names as a legacy.
“Looking back over the 23 years since we founded the charity – and without sounding boastful – it’s something pretty remarkable.”
Of the service he said: “It was a poignant service. The number of people who were there was higher than I expected.
“There were some people who came over from Ireland – from Northern Ireland and from Dublin. There was a nice mix of friends old and new and of young people and children – that really made it a nicely balanced day.”
Following the service on Bridge Street, the Princess Royal visited Warrington Peace Centre where she met Mr Parry and his wife Wendy along with other victims and their families.
Mr Parry said: “Princess Anne is such a level-headed woman – so easy to talk to, you don’t feel like you’re talking to a member of the Royal Family. She just feels like a normal person who is deeply interested in what you’re talking about.
“That made the day very special.”