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On 21 December, 1988 the worst airline disaster in British history and what remains the deadliest terrorist attack in the UK to date took place.

All 259 passengers and crew were killed

A Pan Am 747 Jumbo Jet bound for John F. Kennedy airport in New York crashed just north of the Scottish border.

 
 
A bomb planted in the cargo hold of the Jumbo Jet detonated within an hour of take-off and the explosion sent the plane plummeting to earth.

Eleven residents of the town of Lockerbie along with all 259 passengers and crew aboard the flight were killed.

A row of houses in Lockerbie's Sherwood Crescent was turned into an inferno by the falling wing of the plane, leaving just a smoldering crater behind.

Bodies, some still strapped into their seats, were found in trees and rooftops. The search for pieces of aircraft and luggage spanned 848 square miles and the town's ice rink was turned into a massive morgue. Twenty-one countries were represented among the dead.

Only a crater remained where the houses of
Sherwood Crescent had stood
The bombing sparked an international manhunt with blame focused on Iran, Syria and Libya, and one of the largest murder cases in the UK.

The eventual conviction in 2001 of a Libyan intelligence officer led many to believe that those really responsible had escaped justice.

It Happened in... Lockerbie is the story of the events of that evening told by some of the residents of the town, including Father Patrick Keegans, whose home on Sherwood Crescent was the only one in the area left standing intact, and George Stobbs, one of the first policemen on the scene.

It Happened in... Lockerbie airs from Thursday, August 21, 2009 at the following times GMT: Thursday: 16030 and 2330; Friday: 0630 and 1400; Saturday: 0300 and 2030.

Source: Al Jazeera