US Congressman: “Speaking as an American who is interested in Northern Ireland and its people, I’m always struck by just how little my friends in England care about Northern Ireland. These are good people & true friends of mine. They just don’t know the first thing about NI or frankly care”

Same with family. I never knew people in the army though. But yes, the lack of any interest in NI from most people in England was pretty obvious. It was just a place over there on the news, esp in the 80s. However there was a sort of distrust that we weren't 'proper English' enough and could be partisan to the "you know who". But not in Liverpool or Salford. Nobody gave you grief as everyone was similarly related.

Though i can't say the same for parts of Scotland. I lived in Glasgow and met a certain kind of person who banged on about Northern Ireland any opportunity. Obsessed even. The type that had a red hand tattoo on their arm. They really didn't know what to make of me but i just kept a safe difference. Fearing for my life lol. Hearing people singing "i'd rather be a P*ki than a TIM" and "Cannae get a chippy supper, Bobby Sands" to the same song ( She'll be coming round the mountain) was a strange one.

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