Residents ‘devastated’ after 40 trees cut down or broken overnight in Dublin park

Local councillor describes incident in Dodder Valley Park, which has been reported to gardaí, as ‘appalling act of vandalism’

Residents in south Co Dublin have been left “devastated” while South Dublin County Council is “furious” after about 40 trees were cut down overnight.

About 20 cherry blossoms which were in full bloom were cut down in Dodder Valley Park in Firhouse, while several other species varying in age, including birch, were also felled.

Mayor of South Dublin and local councillor Alan Edge attended the scene and described it as an “appalling act of vandalism”.

Mr Edge was alerted to the apparent vandalism early on Saturday morning by a local resident who reported the incident to local gardaí.


“A lot of local people are really upset because there’s been such a huge amount of work done on Dodder Valley Park,” he said.

“I think it’s fair to say that the council is furious as the landowner. People are very shocked as to why somebody would do that,” he said.

Noting that it is currently cherry blossom season, Mr Edge said the time of year “adds to the outrage” adding that it is “bizarre that somebody would go to such trouble”.

“I hope gardaí will look seriously at this matter and investigate it. This is a serious incident that impacts the whole local community,” he said.

Mr Edge said CCTV was previously installed at the park by South Dublin County Council to monitor antisocial behaviour, however, following a data protection audit, the council was obliged to remove it by the Data Protection Commission earlier this year.

He said this was on the basis that the council has no role in policing antisocial behaviour, which is a garda function and not a local authority function.

“It may or may not have done any good in this case but it just seems to be a ludicrous situation,” he said.

Local Fine Gael councillor Brian Lawlor said about 30 young trees which were planted within the last 18 months were cut down, describing it as “horrific”.

South Dublin County Council has been contacted for comment.

Jack White

Jack White

Jack White is a reporter for The Irish Times