Update For those who have no time for red herrings, please ignore this thread. I read the story too quickly, as Mark rapidly points out. “The north” was the north of England! It’s always a bad mistake to rush to comment without getting the facts right, as all Sluggerites know.
Planning files at the local council, which The Sunday Times has agreed not to name for security reasons, show that more than 60 local people raised objections. A council official said information about the project was classified and it had no record of the plans. In fact, they were withdrawn from the council last year after MI5 discovered they had been publicly available for several months.
This Sunday Times story is the silliest Ive seen in a long time. It reads like a piece of journalist training thats gone wrong. ( a) It undermines itself in succeeding pars and (b) the whole world knows its a grey block called Loughside inside the precincts of Holywood Palace Barracks, North Down, and clearly visible from the road. MI5 never made any attempt to hide it, just as everyone knows London HQ is at Thames House Millbank which is shares with the Northern Ireland Office. In March MI5 announced setting aside £37.5 million and increasing its 200 staff based at Loughside to tackle the upsurge of the Real and Continuity IRA
Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London