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Dublin Live
Dan Grennan

Playground set alight by yobs twice as parents stop bringing children

Parents have stopped bringing their children to a playground after it was set on fire twice amid increasing anti-social behaviour.

The playground in Sean Moore Park in Irishtown has been badly damaged by the two fires - one of which took place last night. The facility is said to have cost almost €1 million as well as taking a few a few years to plan and build.

Local Councillor James Geoghegan told Dublin Live it was a "disgrace" and called for increased garda presence to catch the culprits. He said: "A playground that took a number of years to build and cost about a million euro.

"Parents have told me they don't even go to the playground anymore because of the concerns about anti-social behaviour - that is even in the evening time.

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"The video last night was obviously late at night when there would be no kids around. It is causing fire damage.

He added: "I go there myself with my kids and you can see various play items that have burn marks on them. So, I don't know what the solution is but I think we need to identify the culprits and there needs to be consequences for their actions.

"In the short-term we probably need more garda monitoring in the night time and maybe we could catch them in the act. In the long-term, I think it would be terrible if we had to introduce CCTV but if this keeps going on we are going to have to do something like that so we can actually catch the people who are doing this."

There is also "stupid" graffiti in the playground which Cllr Geoghegan said was a "real shame" because it is one of the nicer playgrounds in the area.

There is also anti-social behaviour in the evenings that is creating an "intimidating" environment. Cllr Geoghegan said: "Groups of young people hanging about. It is a playground so it is not designed for people who are maybe 15 or 16-years-old.

"It was designed for kids who are 12 or 13 or younger. There is a sense of intimidation and just general messing which leads to an environment that is not very friendly."

The gardai are investigating the fire which, thankfully, no body was injured in. A spokesman said: "Gardai responded to reports of a fire at Sean Moore Park, Dublin 4 at approximately 11:35pm last night, Tuesday June 27, 2023.

"There were no injuries reported. Enquiries are ongoing."

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