Lockerbie terror attack haunts city -journalist
Thirty years ago today, (Friday) a daily paper news editor, who cut his teeth in Campbeltown, was settling down for an evening in when a TV newsflash reported a plane crash. At just after 7pm, Malcolm Speed, aged 47, raced back to the Daily Record to organise its reporting team as the world learned that an airliner had crashed at Lockerbie and the town was ablaze.
On Tuesday, recalling shifts lasting 16 hours as the horror unfolded, Mr Speed said: ‘I always remember Lockerbie, the deaths at Christmas and the 270 lives lost.’ The former Campbeltown Grammar School pupil, who left and joined the Courier aged 15 after his father’s death, added: ‘I ordered a top team of reporters from all parts of Scotland to Lockerbie. ‘The best men and women at the Daily Record, where I was the news editor and had been since 1983. ‘Soon a terrorist bomb was mentioned, the plane, a Pan Am 103, was late in Germany and soon Scotland’s biggest mass murder began with 259 dead from the plane and 11 Lockerbie residents. Dumfries and Galloway police spearheaded the investigation supported by other Scottish forces and the world’s security agencies. ‘The investigation was huge and ultimately led to Abdul Basset Ali Mohammed all-Megrahi being convicted and jailed for 27 years. Another man Lamin Khalifa Fhonah, was acquitted at a special Scottish court in Holland.’
Malcolm Speed in 1988.