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Lockerbie is a quiet village of 4,000 residents, about 75 miles from Glasgow. On 21 December 1988 a bomb aboard Pan Am flight 103 exploded as it flew overhead. This plane had left Heathrow Airport bound for New York City. Instead it plunged into the ground killing 243 passengers, 16 air crew and 11 Lockerbie residents. They were murdered at the orders of Muammar Gaddafi, the brutal dictator of Libya. Today the victims lie at rest in the Dryfesdale cemetery. Along with the main memorial with all the victim’s names are individual memorials from many of the families.
There is a full visitors' office called Dryfesdale Lodge. Originally this was a cottage used by cemetery workers. It was due to be sold off by the local government in a plan for all such buildings. It was recognised though that this was no ordinary cemetery and the Dryfesdale Lodge Visitors' Centre was opened on 25 October 2003. Inside there are permanent displays and exhibitions that feature the :Lockerbie Bombing. They also cover the ancient, Roman and Medieval history of Lockerbie. They also house temporary exhibits related to the surrounding area. Inside staff can help with question, maps and directions. There is also an accessible unisex toilet and free parking at the entrance.
They are open every day from “end of March until 30th September 10.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. October 11.00 a.m. to 3.00 p.m. (closed on Wednesdays) Open week prior to 21st December”. I find that a bit confusing, so I have their phone number and email address below if you would like to visit.
The grounds are very well taken care of and have a beautiful central are of gardens. The Lockerbie Memorial(s) are at the rear. The paths vary between stone flags to hard packed gravel. All the terrain is flat and wheelchair accessible. It is very easy to get here from the motorway if you are driving.
A Libyan agent, directed by Muammar Gaddafi, planted the devastating bomb in a suitcase which brought down the plane killing over 200 people. Gaddafi was dragged out of a sewer by a mob, beaten and shot dead in 2011. The agent who planted the bomb, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, was jailed for 10 years. Then the Scottish Government let him return to Libya where national celebrations greeted him in 2009. He died in his own bed, a free man, in 2012.
Updated Oct 15, 2012
Phone: +44 (0) 1576 205962