Hundreds join protest at Dove House following attacks

Residents in the Bogside have warned those behind a series of attacks on Dove House need to stop now before someone is maimed or killed.

Friday, 19th August 2016, 3:44 pm
Updated Friday, 19th August 2016, 5:45 pm
A section of the crowd gathered at Dove House.

Hundreds of local people took part in a mass protest outside Dove House on Friday afternoon following the latest in a series of attacks on the building on Thursday night.

The community resource building was scorch damaged after petrol bombs were fired at it for the second time this week.

The attack happened just 30 minutes after an AA meeting inside the building.

A section of the crowd gathered at Dove House.

Those gathered spoke of their disgust and called on the culprits to “draw a line in the sand now” before they end up responsible for killing people.

One local woman, whose family lives close by in the built up area, said: “If that building goes up and these houses here beside it go up you have death on your hands then.

“We have gas, our neighbours have gas. The whole place could go up. You could have innocent people suffering now because of this.

“A line needs to be drawn now. Stop. Whatever grievances you have come and say what it is. This is our family home.

A section of the crowd at the protest at Dove House.

“Dove House do a brilliant service in the community, so why are they doing this? It’s beyond me. I can’t understand why. Dove House help a lot of people. People depend on it, and it’s not fair, that’s people’s jobs on the line as well as people lives.

“There are people here who are afraid to sleep at night-time, wondering if they will ever wake up.”

Another resident who has lived in the area for over 40 years added: “It’s awful, bloody awful. I have good people here, but it’s what could happen.

“I don’t know why they are targeting it at all for everybody that is in it is while helpful.

Bronagh McMenamin, manager at Dove House.

“Dove House is there for everybody and they come from everywhere to Dove House.”

Bronagh McMenamin, who addressed the crowds gathered at the meeting, told the Journal: “This has been the second attack in the last 48 hours.

“What we are dealing with now is a couple of thousand pounds worth of damage but we could have been dealing with was a few fatalities because AA had literally left about half an hour before it was set alight.”

Chair of Dove House Board, Roisin Barton, said the support shown has been heartening since the attacks.

A section of the crowd gathered at Dove House.

“I have been involved with Dove House for about 32 years and in that time Dove House has helped thousands of local people with advice, with support and with money.”

A section of the crowd at the protest at Dove House.
Bronagh McMenamin, manager at Dove House.