Mystery plaque to be taken down at O'Connell Bridge

Tue, May 9, 2006, 01:00

Dublin City Council is to remove a memorial plaque from O'Connell Bridge because it does not know the person commemorated or how the plaque got there.

The bronze plaque, set into the wall on the western side of the bridge, commemorating "Fr Pat Noise" was spotted recently by a Sunday newspaper journalist.

The plaque claims to mark the spot where the priest died in 1919 when his carriage plunged into the River Liffey in "suspicious circumstances".

The council's heritage officer has reviewed historical records but can find no reference either to the priest or the accident, a council spokeswoman said.

Furthermore, the council did not erect the plaque, was not asked permission for its placement on the bridge and has "no idea" how it got there.

The plaque will be removed within days, the spokeswoman said.

Meanwhile, plans to preserve 16 Moore Street, the last headquarters of the leaders of the 1916 Rising, have been delayed by at least four months because of errors in the notice proposing its addition to the Record of Protected Structures.

Councillors were expected to ratify its preservation at a city council meeting last night.

However, city manager John Fitzgerald said the process would have to be delayed until September because of "technical problems" in the public notice.

The building would continue to be protected by the council until that time, Mr Fitzgerald said. However, Labour councillor Dermot Lacey said last night that the building was already deteriorating.

The leaders of each party on the council will meet with the city manager later this week to discuss the issue.