A Derrytresk Health and Safety Officer, in his first formal job, appears to have dug a hole with a family spade behind the stand ‘to see what their turf was like’ which led to a large crack forming in the West Stand, affectionately known as ‘The Kop’.
Fergal Fitzgerald (24), who qualified as a structural engineer last month, was given the task of overseeing a new toilet which was to be built behind the stand after a report in the Belfast Telegraph indicated a rise in weak bladders amongst Ulster men in 2015.
Witnesses suggest Fitzgerald said something about wanting to know if Belfast had ‘good burning turf‘ before digging furiously on his own behind the now-damaged stand with a spade from the boot of his car.
Fitzgerald’s university lecturer, Professor Lingard, maintains he is not surprised with the development:
“Fergal is a very clever man and qualified with a First but has a weakness for turf and peat. For part of his Field Work during his final year at Queen’s University we took his class to Pisa in Italy to examine the Leaning Tower. When my back was turned he started digging with his ‘family spade’ around the tower because he wanted to know what Italian turf was like to burn. He nearly toppled the thing. The Italians weren’t very happy.”
Despite good character references, a Loyalist paramilitary group called ‘We’re Not Brazil We’ll Kill Ye’ issued a statement warning Derrytresk residents to stay away from Windsor Park and that anyone seen in the ground wearing a checked shirt and carrying a spade will be deemed a legitimate target.