Limerick GAA club 'fed up' after thugs vandalise defibrillator and pitch

Maria Flannery

Reporter:

Maria Flannery

Vandals: defibrillator removed

Vandals: defibrillator removed

A LIMERICK GAA club is counting the cost of two recent acts of vandalism at the town’s club facility, including ‘senseless’ damage to a life-saving defibrillator.

Askeaton GAA club members posted to Facebook about the vandals’ attacks, explaining that the piece of medical equipment was taken out from its post and taken apart in what they have called “a senseless and dangerous act”.

“What if that life-saving device had been required this evening? What if a member of our community needed this device, or even a member of their families, how would they feel if it wasn't available?” they stated in the online post.

“There are always young teenagers and older who use the facility everyday to have a kick around and we welcome this, but unfortunately others use this for antisocial behaviour. This is the utmost disrespect for our community,” they said, adding that the defibrillator cost a lot of money and was kindly donated.

The defibrillator was removed in late August, in an incident which also resulted in other damage when “mindless thugs kicked out the back wall of the dugout”, leaving it “a very unsafe structure”.

“Every morning our caretakers remove cans, bottles and other not so nice items from the vicinity, so as to keep it a safe place for both young and old. If you have any information we would be very grateful if you would pass it on to either us or the local garda station.

“We wish to leave our field an open facility but if this continues we will have to rethink it unfortunately.”

A second incident last week saw the nets behind the goals being tampered with. The rope that is used to secure them was cut and stolen.

“We are really feeling fed up as a club. We provide a much-needed facility where young people can go up and have a kick around with their friends,” they wrote.

In an age where phones and computers are providing so much of children’s entertainment, the club members have said that they are pleased to provide such a good facility for kids to exercise.

“The nets and ropes were replaced and repaired with the community's money through our Strictly Come Dancing fundraiser. So this is your money that they have technically stolen,” they said.

“We're at a loss as to know where to go next. Why should we bother improving our facilities if this is the way they are going to be treated?”

This vandalism is the latest in a spate of antisocial crimes in the historic town.