How 14-year-old boys put together plan to massacre students at their Yorkshire school

Two boys who plotted a Columbine-inspired shooting at their school in Northallerton, North Yorkshire, have been sentenced.

Photo issued by North East CTU of the contents of a rucksack that was found by officers searching the older boy's hideout, which prosecutors claimed were instruments for building an explosive.

Here is a timeline of events relating to the case:

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

- April 20 1999 - Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold carry out a deadly shooting at the Columbine High School in Colorado.


- May 5 - In the UK, the two teenagers both download a document which provides, among other things, instructions on manufacturing bombs.

- May 16 - The younger boy messages the older boy, telling him he “can’t be bothered any more”. The older boy responds by saying: “If you’re gonna kill yourself, shoot up the school.”

- June - The older boy starts dating a girl. In her evidence to court, she claimed they initially hit it off, but over time “the darker stuff started”.

- September 4 - The older defendant carves his name on to the girl’s lower back. She would later describe reluctantly consenting as “the biggest mistake I’ve ever made”.

- September 8 - The younger boy messages his co-conspirator to say: “I really wanna shoot up the school.”

- September 27 - The same boy tells a schoolgirl of the plan to carry out a shooting at the school.

- September 28 - Police officers interview the two boys separately. The younger says he confessed to get his co-accused to stop, whilst the other denies any plotting.

- October 22 - A search of the older boy’s hideout in Catterick Garrison uncovers a rucksack filled with wires, screws and a bottle of liquid. Prosecutors claim these were instruments for building a weapon.

- October 23 - The older boy is arrested.

- October 25 - The other teenager voluntarily attends a police station with his mother.


- May 24 - The two teenage boys are convicted of conspiracy to murder at Leeds Crown Court.

- July 20 - A judge at the same court sentences them to 12 years and 10 years.