October 5: Working class Protestants suffered from poor housing too, says Campbell

DUP MP Gregory Campbell with the late Councillor Anna Hay on a housing protest in the Waterside in the 1970s.
DUP MP Gregory Campbell with the late Councillor Anna Hay on a housing protest in the Waterside in the 1970s.

DUP MP Gregory Campbell has marked the 50th anniversary of the October 5 civil rights march of 1968 with a reminder that working class Protestants suffered from poor housing conditions and living standards alongside their Catholic neighbours in the 1960s and 1970s.

The MP has unearthed a fascinating picture of himself alongside the late DUP councillor Anna Hay - mother of Willie - on a housing protest in the Waterside in the 1970s.

Mr. Campbell has consistently pointed out that people from his background suffered similarly from the deplorable housing conditions complained of by the majority nationalist community in the city during the civil rights era.

Equally, poorer Protestants were also discriminated against alongside their Catholic counterparts by the property franchise, the abolition of which was one of the key reform demands of the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA).

"Nationalists and republicans are holding events this week for the civil rights anniversaries," remarked the DUP MP.

"I came on this archive photo which was a protest held by Protestants about housing conditions in the Waterside in the 1970s.

"It features the late Anna Hay DUP councillor, to the left near the front, and a young DUP activist called Gregory Campbell in the middle of it (again). The noise of the IRA was the bombing and the SDLP were silent," he added.