A lifetime of sectarian attacks
An elderly couple say they have had enough of sectarian abuse after suffering almost 50 years of attacks on their south Belfast home.
Trevor George, an 82-year-old Protestant man married to a Catholic and living in Dunmurry, has been attacked by loyalist gangs from the nearby Seymour Hill estate since the 1960s.
The PSNI (and previously the RUC) have always failed to protect the family or deter their attackers.
In the latest incident his wife, who is in her seventies, was abused as she arrived home from church on Sunday.
Mr George said they were targeted “because we are a mixed marriage”. However, he vowed never to leave the house which is situated on the banks of the River Lagan and where he and his wife brought up three children.
He said he has lost count of the number of attacks which have seen his family under siege.
“My wife was getting out of the car when nine youths started to shout abuse at her,” he said, recounting one recent assault.
“There was a cushion from a sofa lying around which they threw at her.
“It was filled with water and hit her but thankfully she was able to steady herself with the car.”
He said his wife was still in shock after the incident. “These are definitely sectarian attacks,” Mr George said.
“I have three grown-up children who are all doing very well now but when they were younger they would be abused or attacked if they went through the estate.
“We have been petrol-bombed and paint-bombed and there’s been about 50 stoning incidents.”
He said the gang threatened to return on Sunday night to break windows.
“I stayed up until about 3am in case they came back,” Mr George said.
“This has been going on for well over 40 years. It’s a disgrace they way they are getting on.”
Mr George said no-one had ever been prosecuted for attacking his family. He has fortified his home over the years, installing CCTV cameras and bullet-proof glass.
“We have no peace of mind which is no way to live life,” he said. “My wife is very shocked and annoyed and worried that it may happen again.”
In previous incidents the gates of Mr George’s home have been painted red, white and blue.
Loyalist paramilitary slogans and other graffiti have also been daubed on his gateposts and driveway. His car has been attacked and in 2001 he suffered wounds above the eye when the house was being stoned.
Mr George said attacks were often launched from a laneway next to his house which leads to Seymour Hill and a footbridge to the rear of the property which provides access to the Lagan towpath.