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Vandals “destroy treasured public art sculpture” in Bessbrook Pond

Informational tourism signage had also been vandalised

A piece of public art celebrating the local connection to the linen industry and erected in Besssbrook Pond has been destroyed by vandals.

It follows the destruction of an informational board for tourists highlighting the piece and its meaning.

Erected by the Slieve Gullion Landscape Partnership and created by local artist Alan Burke, the sculpture was based on a flax flower and highlighted the central role the Bessbrook linen mill played in the rich history of the village.

Sinn Fein councillor Roisin Mulgrew has condemned the “mindless actions of vandals” who have “destroyed a treasured public art sculpture and related signage”.

She said: “It is a shame that such a magnificent piece of local art has been mindlessly targeted by those responsible.

“Bessbrook has a vibrant culture and heritage, and this sculpture sought to champion and promote this history for local citizens and tourists alike.

“This act of blatant disrespect and vandalism will only bring residents together to strengthen and reassert the culture of the village, and encourage further celebrations of its heritage for the world to see.”

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