‘You know it will happen, yet never think it will’ – Argyll MP’s reaction after Westminster attack


ARGYLL and Bute MP Brendan O’Hara has spoken of his shock following the attack on the Houses of Parliament.

At 2.40pm on Wednesday March 22 a man drove a car along a pavement on Westminster Bridge, killing at least two pedestrians and injuring many more. The car then crashed into railings outside the Houses of Parliament.

The attacker, carrying a knife, ran to parliament where he was confronted by the police. An unarmed police officer, PC Keith Palmer, was stabbed and killed.

The attacker was then shot dead by armed officers.

MPS were placed under ‘lockdown’ in the House of Commons as a security measure while Prime Minister Theresa May was whisked by a side door to safety.

For the first Wednesday in two years Brendan O’Hara was not in London, but the impact is very real.

He told the Argyllshire Advertiser of the reaction among fellow MPs: ‘Everyone is shaken. It’s one of these things you know will happen, yet at the same time never think it will.’

Mr O’Hara added: ‘My routine is to start work at 7am on a Monday in Westminster and finish at 7.30pm on Thursday before coming back up the road. In normal circumstances I would have been there during the attack, but with constituency work piling up and in a week where parliamentary business allowed, I took the opportunity to spend time in Helensburgh on constituency business. It was the first week in two years I haven’t been there.

‘I found out about the attack when I got a phone call from someone telling me to turn on a television.’

He paid tribute to the police and security staff at Westminster.

Mr O’Hara said: ‘I have huge respect and praise for their professionalism and courage. The very fact that this attacker managed to get just a few yards towards the parliament building before being stopped is testament to this.

‘My thoughts are clearly with the people affected by this shocking attack.’

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