John McGuffin

John McGuffin of Belfast and Derry (and other parts) was cremated on May Day, 2002 at Roselawn in Belfast around 3.00pm.

John, or Seán as he was sometimes known, was a very independent anarchist who is perhaps most well known for providing the single anarchist element within the People's Democracy group of the sixties and carrying an anarchist banner (himself), on the Burntollet civil rights march. He was interned in 1971 and later wrote an excellent and valuable book on the history of internment in Ireland, as well as another book, 'The Guineapigs', about the selection and torture of a group of internees, which caused much embarrassment to the state.

John was from a Protestant background and was college educated. By his own admission he had never met a Catholic, until he was 18 years old, and he always regarded himself as a 'Lundy'. He had many contacts with libertarians from Germany over the years in particular but was never active in mainstream anarchism, as far as I know, here in Derry or in Ireland generally.

John was a cantankerous and grumpy character who had a serious dose of cynicism, but through his 'Dispatches', e-mailed to many people across the north, he kept up some form of political and anarchist-inspired activism. He will be missed by many, especially by his partner Christiana, and will always be remembered as an anarchist.

Mairtin O'Cathain &endash; ASF &endash; Derry

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This edition is No71 published in July 2002

Workers Solidarity 71