Eamonn Holmes recalls IRA school bus petrol bomb horror that landed HIM in trouble

Eamonn Holmes has told how a priest at his school in Belfast gave him detention for being late – after the IRA hijacked his school bus and set it on fire.

The This Morning host was a 14-year-old at the height of the Troubles at the time.

Eamonn, now 59, recalled: “Our bus was hijacked on the Antrim Road. This man wearing a balaclava said, ‘We are commandeering this bus for the Irish Republican Army.’

“He starts sprinkling petrol ­everywhere, so we get off. And they throw a petrol bomb on the bus and set it on fire. So we walk the next mile-and-a-half to school.

“We got to the college, the gate was closed and Father Walsh was standing on top of the drive.”


He continued: “I’m puffing and panting and he said, ‘Why are you late Holmes?’ and I said, ‘Father, our bus was hijacked at the top of the road and it was burnt. And we had to run down here and you can see the smoke.’

“And he looks at me and says, ‘Detention.’

“I got detention for the IRA hijacking my bus. It was my fault basically.

“­Nowadays, in this caring snowflake society, they would say, ‘Are you OK? We will get a ­counsellor to speak to you.’ And I would be suffering PTSD for the rest of my life.

“But what did I get? Detention.”

Eamonn told the story on the White Wine Question Time Podcast with his pal, former X Factor presenter Kate Thornton.

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