Abortion vote: No campaign crosses run foul of Donegal council

Over 17,000 crucifixes mounted on 30km stretch of road from Letterkenny to Bridgend

Donegal County Council has removed white crosses planted by No campaigners along a 30km stretch of road following complaints they were distracting motorists.

Thousands of crosses were erected overnight, more than 17,000 in all, according No campaigners.They were placed a metre apart and stretch from Letterkenny to Bridgend in Derry. Dozens of No campaigners are understood to have worked overnight along the route, although no group took responsibility.

Donegal Pro-Life has not commented but a local No campaigner said the crosses represented “the lives that will be taken per year in Ireland if there is a Yes vote”.

Campaigners for repeal of the Eighth Amendment criticised the move. Donegal Together for Yes spokeswoman Sinéad Stewart said: “ We’ve had people who are really upset and annoyed by this. I think they are absolutely brushing over the pain and the suffering of the women and families of Donegal by doing something like this.


“My question is: What are those crosses for? Are they for the babies in Tuam? Are they for the women in the Magdalene Laundries? Are they for each child that was sold to American couples from the Catholic Church? The hypocrisy is absolutely outstanding. They have outdone themselves. We are very aware it’s a stunt, but where they are getting the money for this is questionable as well.”

The council said it would remove any crosses that constituted a distraction for drivers. And it had already taken down a number of them by Friday afternoon, including some of those placed at roundabouts.

“Donegal County Council can confirm . . . that we are removing crosses that are causing a hazard to either pedestrians or road users,” said a spokeswoman.

She added if people deemed any of the crosses a road hazard in certain areas it would assess the situation and act accordingly.

Meanwhile, an enormous No slogan arranged in the early hours of Thursday on the side of Ben Bulben in Co Sligo has been removed.

The word was erected in 50m (160ft) letters using plastic cladding by anti-abortion campaigners in support of a No vote.

A spokesman for Sligo County Council confirmed that the sign had been dismantled, though the work had not been carried out by council staff. The council received a number of complaints about the slogan, he said.