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Gardaí investigating after fire destroys pagan goddess sculpture on Waterford Greenway

The design was a tribute to an Irish mythological goddess called Éiriu.

Image: Waterford Garda Station

GARDAÍ HAVE LAUNCHED an investigation after a large wooden sculpture featured on Waterford’s Greenway route was destroyed in a fire.

They have appealed for help from the public after fire crews were unable to save the artwork.

It was erected earlier this year as a biodiversity project in tribute to an Irish mythological goddess called Éiriu.

The centre of the sculpture – Éiriu’s body – is now a mound of ash with only the outstretched hand and feet remaining.

greenway fire 3 Éiriu before it was destroyed in a fire. Source: Special Branch Carvers

The fire service was called to the scene at Carriganore on the outskirts of the city early on Friday morning where the large wooden structure was in flames.

While the blaze was eventually extinguished, the sculpture was “destroyed”, according to gardaí.

Gardaí are treating it as an incident of criminal damage and are appealing for any witnesses or anyone with information to come forward.

The sculpture is of ‘Éiriu’ and was carved by Special Branch Carvers’ John Hayes, a master wood craftsman who has designed other works including the 23 metre sword lying in Waterford’s Viking Triangle.

It was installed in March of this year as part of a biodiversity project, in collaboration with the South East Technological University.

A Garda spokesman said: “Waterford Garda Station are looking for assistance in the investigation of the criminal damage to the wooden sculpture that was a feature on the Greenway at Carriganore, Waterford City. It has been destroyed by fire.

“The damage was discovered on 30 September at approximately 7.30am. Gardai and Waterford Fire Service attended the scene.”

Gardaí said that if anyone in the area early on Friday morning noticed anything suspicious, they can contact Waterford Garda Station on 051-305300.

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