NUI Galway Innocence Clinic Hosts Conversation with Guildford Four Member Paddy Armstrong & Journalist Mary-Elaine Tynan

Paddy Armstrong. Photo: Gill Books
Mar 25 2019 Posted: 12:19 GMT

Students to highlight their investigations into wrongful convictions

Monday, 25 March, 2019: The NUI Galway Innocence Clinic will host an onstage-conversation with Paddy Armstrong, wrongfully convicted as part of the Guildford Four, and journalist Mary-Elaine Tynan in their first ever appearance in the west of Ireland on Tuesday, 2 April, 2019 at the Aras Moyola Large Lecture Theatre. As part of the programme, NUI Galway students, who have been investigating wrongful convictions with the NUI Galway Innocence Clinic, will also highlight their work in a panel discussion moderated by Mary-Elaine Tynan. 

Armstrong and Tynan collaborated on Life After Life: A Guildford Four Memoir, which was published two years ago, the book is a nakedly honest and compelling exposure of Armstrong’s experience being wrongfully convicted, its crushing aftermath and the ultimate restoration of his life.

The NUI Galway Innocence Clinic is a fledgling initiative launched in September 2018 with the cooperation of the School of Law, Journalism Programme and Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway under the guidance of Anne Driscoll, a visiting US Fulbright Scholar and award-winning journalist. During the first semester, Driscoll taught students about wrongful convictions, how they happen and why, as well as how to use journalism techniques and skills to investigate wrongful conviction cases. In the second semester, the students have been applying those lessons in an investigation of the Maamtrasna murders case. Myles Joyce, who was wrongfully convicted and hanged in 1882, received the second posthumous presidential pardon in Irish history by President Michael D. Higgins on 4 April, 2018. Students have been looking at the claims of innocence made by four other men who falsely pleaded guilty in the case – Myles’ brothers Martin, Patrick, and Patrick’s son Thomas Joyce, along with John Casey.

Anne Driscoll, US Fulbright Scholar at NUI Galway, said: “We are thrilled that Paddy Armstrong and Mary-Elaine Tynan have agreed to share their story with the students of the NUI Galway Innocence Clinic, the greater NUI Galway community and the public at large. There is an important role for both law and journalism in addressing the injustice of a wrongful conviction and we hope this programme will explore that very idea. This special event is the culmination of a year of extraordinary exploration and learning by the law, journalism and human rights students who have participated in the Innocence Clinic. And as my Fulbright scholarship comes to a conclusion, I want to express how profoundly grateful I am to NUI Galway for having the vision and commitment to offer students this unique and valuable learning opportunity. Having an Innocence Clinic is both good for students and good for society.”

The event is free and open to the public but registration is required at Eventbrite here

Life After Life: A Guildford Four Memoir will be available for sale and for signing by Paddy Armstrong and Mary-Elaine Tynan beginning at 5pm outside the Aras Moyola Large Lecture Theatre. The programme will begin at 5:30pm followed by a reception afterwards. 

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