THE CAMPBEDS were brought out of the Stormont store in preparation for any disruption marking the first anniversary of the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement. In a post-nuclear situation, civil servants without “abnormal domestic ties” would have helped run NI. And phone systems and scramblers occupied the NI Emergency Committee according to papers from the late 1980s released under the 30/20 Year Rule.
DECLASSIFED FILES released under the 30/20 Year Rule show that in 1991, Emergency Planning envisaged panic if the IRA placed a small nuclear device in Belfast or threatened to release anthrax germs. At the time the NI food stockpile was sufficient to bake 250 million scones (assuming there was a source of heat).
DESCLASSIFIED PAPERS record the NI emergency planning in 1988 when a Russian satellite was expected to fall to Earth and had the potential to scatter radioactive debris if its reactor core came down with it. While the risk was low, Home Secretary Douglas Hurd felt that the government should recommend that people stayed indoors if the satellite’s safety system failed and its final orbit passed over the UK.