A North Belfast interface barrier that has been in place for over twenty years may soon be opened for access again after the Justice Minister agreed to transfer funds to the Department for Regional Development that will facilitate its opening.

The Department of Justice today (Thursday) confirmed that David Ford had agreed to transfer funds to the DRD for roadworks that will lead to the opening of the barrier on Newington Street at the junction of the Limestone Road.

The barrier was put in place soon after the death of Terry McDaid in 1988. The father-of-two was shot dead in May of that year by loyalist gunmen as he sat with his mother, father, wife and two daughers in Newington Street.

A spokesperson for the Department of Justice told the North Belfast News: “The Minister has agreed to transfer funding to the Department for Regional Development to enable them to carry out roadworks that will facilitate the opening of the security gate at the junction of Newington Street and the Limestone Road.”

A further announcement on the plans is expected tomorrow.

Local Sinn Féin Councillor Conor Maskey said the wishes of the residents should be paramount in any local work.