Heritage Physical World

Limerick City Council — Destroying Your Heritage One Cellar At A Time

Another big round of applause to Limerick City Council for smashing in the hidden treasures beneath our feet.  This is what happens when a local authority has no conservation officer, no archaeologist, no heritage officer and no architect.  It puts hundreds of years of history at the mercy of an ignorant lout with a digger.

Under our town, there’s another hidden city of subterranean caverns, 200 years old, which the city council is busy demolishing.  In a grown-up country, some official would see that this is a resource and would plan a way to use it for the common good, but not here in Ireland.

In this country, we give such decisions to roads technicians — people who wouldn’t know heritage from a hole in the ground.

And here are the same caverns filled with concrete.



Obliterating The Hidden Georgian Limerick

Beneath the Limerick city streets there is another city of brick vaults.  It’s a hidden, invisible subterranean city that few people have ever seen or even heard of.

Today, as I passed by Upper William Street, I saw roadworks going on.  The brick vaults had been demolished and  a mixer truck was pouring concrete into them, obliterating them.

I found it sad to see the destruction of these arches that are such an essential part of the city’s Georgian character, even if rarely seen, and can’t help asking if it would have been possible to find a better use for them than filling them with concrete, destroying them forever.

I wonder who made the decision to do this and on what advice that decision was taken?  I wonder if the person who ordered this understood the momentous and irreversible nature of what they have chosen to do.

I wonder if that person has any connection with Limerick, any intuitive connection with the city or any grasp of what it means to destroy something like this?

As people used to say when I was growing up, Have they any soul?

I realise that Limerick is only a very small town by European standards, but it also has one of the most intact Georgian fabrics anywhere, and it should be preserved for future generations. Do you think they do things like this today in Rome?


Limerick city has no architect, no conservation officer, no heritage officer and no archaeologist.  Therefore, this decision was made by some unaccountable, ill-informed philistine.

That’s the new Ireland for you.



Limerick City Council — Destroying Your Heritage One Cellar At A Time