THE process to repair an ornate fountain perched on Limerick’s Sarsfield Bridge is under way after it was targeted by vandals.
The fountain at Shannon Rowing Club was smashed by thugs in March, leaving the club with a major headache as to its repair.
The ornate statue in the centre of the fountain outside the club’s building is estimated to date from 1906, yet was cruelly targeted by unknown assailants in the early hours of a Friday morning in March and left damaged.
Now, several members of the club have taken down the statue and planted flowers around the fountain in a bid to cosmetically improve the structure.
“A few of the lads were down there on Saturday and cleaned it up and took down the broken statue,” explained club secretary Paul Flannery.
“The top part of it has been removed to see what can be done with it.
“We wanted to try and get it back into some bit of a respectable shape and looking a bit more attractive.
“We have taken it down to clean it up first and see what to do with it,” he added.
While three of the club members were working on the fountain last Saturday, a kind hearted stranger passing by took it on himself to donate €50 to the fountain’s repair work.
The club, which has been built up to 180 members thanks to a recent drive, simply cannot afford to fix the structure themselves and will likely need to resort to some kind of fundraising endeavour.
“We are going to assess the damage now and the cost involved in its repair,” said Paul.
“We have a company that do those kind of repairs but it is money that we don’t have at the moment and we are assessing the next step to see if we can get it back to its former glory,” he added.
Gardai were informed about the incident and investigated it, yet no culprit for the vandalism has been identified.
“No, unfortunately because there are no cameras on the bridge,” said Paul.
“The guards came back to me last week about it but to be honest it was a random act of violence and there are no witnesses, so unfortunately no way of catching anyone for it.”