An elderly woman from the Legan area has spoken of how her family’s homeplace has been continuously targeted by vandals, saying their sense of moral responsibility is at “rock bottom”.
Eighty-three-year-old Elizabeth Fahy, who owns the house but does not reside there, explained that the windows of the property were recently smashed, but that it wasn’t the first time hoodlums had set their sights on the property.
“The hot water cylinder was stolen, and so was the stove in one of the rooms; they left the door wide open,” she said.
On the advice of the Gardaí, Mrs Fahy has now taken measures to secure the home where she was raised, and which was latterly occupied by her late brother.
“I phoned them and they advised me to secure the building and to put up a notice to warn against trespassing.
“I got a neighbour to board it up because the Gardaí said if people went into it and got injured, they could come after me (take legal action).”
Mrs Fahy went on to say that it isn’t the value of the property that concerns her but “the mindless destruction and the effect it will have on the area.
“It’s made the house look absolutely horrendous to passers-by, and it’s now a blot on the landscape.
Ms Fahy told the Longford Leader that she was raised in the house before moving to the UK, where she lived for more than 50 years before returning to settle in Legan.
“I’m not a crybaby, but when I went to see it yesterday, it brought a tear to my eye. I felt sad; I had a happy childhood there,” she explained.
“My father’s name was Tom Moran, and he bought the house and three-and-a-half acres of land for £70 in 1920,” Mrs Fahy revealed.
“It’s about a half-mile from Legan village. There was a limestone quarry on the land, which he burned in a kiln and sold to farmers to put on the land.”
The last person to live in the property was Mrs Fahy’s brother James, who had carried out renovation work on the building.
“It was originally a thatched cottage, but he slated the roof, got new windows fitted, new stoves put in, and added a new bathroom,” she continued.
“It’s been locked-up for the past few years since he died.”
Frustrated by the series of events, Mrs Fahy has issued a plea to lawmakers and the community in general for something to be done.
“It’s such a shame,” she said.
“If we don’t try to do something about it, it will gather momentum and continue. The level of moral responsibility in some sections of our community is at rock bottom.”