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'Luke Kelly memorial should stay near home'

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The Luke Kelly statue has been vandalised five times

The Luke Kelly statue has been vandalised five times

The Luke Kelly statue has been vandalised five times

Locals have said the statue of Dubliners singer Luke Kelly should stay where it is, despite being vandalised for the fifth time at the weekend.

One community leader has said it should be placed on a taller plinth, surrounded with railings and lit up at night to protect it from further attacks.

The statue was unveiled in the heart of Dublin's Docklands in January last year at a spot beside the Royal Canal and near the singer's former home on Sheriff Street.

Since then, it has been repeatedly vandalised, leading to calls for it to be moved to a different location.

However, local shop owner and residents' association spokesman Mark Fay has said it should stay where it is.

"This is where Luke was born and bred and went to school. The people of Guild Street, Sheriff Street and the North Wall are very proud of Luke, and moving his statue would turn the whole thing into a Where's Wally scenario," he told the Irish Independent.

"Luke should stay and if the statue of his head was put on a taller plinth and surrounded with railings and lit-up at night it would make it more difficult to vandalise," he said.

"It might not make it impossible to vandalise, but the way it is positioned now makes it just too easy for an opportunist.

"When I learn of these attacks it annoys me, and it's embarrassing.

"The area gets hammered and criticised and people like to stick the knife into us saying 'they're all the same down there'.

"But the people who are doing this are probably not from the area at all."

Two men were arrested on Monday in relation to two separate attacks on the statue in January and March.

A file is being sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions in each case.

Irish Independent