New information – and a photo!











I was delighted to receive an email from Ian MacTaggart from Kent, England this morning which filled some missing information in our record of Private Herbert Aspinall who died as a result of the Cobh Pier Head Shooting of 21st March 1924.  Ian told of how his grandfather Neil MacTaggart, who was born in Cobh, had in his personal effects a photograph of a young man with the words “Fishy, killed by unknown men on Friday, 21st March 1924”.  For many years Ian wondered about the identity of “Fishy” but he knew that he had been a friend of his grandfather Neil and that Neil had been by his side when he was shot in Cobh 93 years ago.  Well the mystery is now solved and we can reveal that “Fishy” was none other than Private Herbert Aspinall who died aged 18 in that terrible attack.  Ian sent me on the photo of “Fishy” and put it beside the one of Herbert he found on the “Death on the Pier” website associated with my recently published book. So now we finally have a better quality photo of Herbert to compare with the grainy newspaper scan which was all I was able to find of Herbert at the time of publishing the book.  Sincere thanks to Ian for allowing me to share the photo and to his late grandfather Neil (died 1999) for holding onto it for so long.

Side by side: the photo of Ian MacTaggart’s friend “Fishy” and Private Aspinall. He looks even younger than his 18 years. He may be wearing the team shirt of Lee Rovers, the Cobh soccer team he played with during his time in the town. Can anyone confirm this?