Search continues for site to remember victims of abuse

A site is still being sought in Dublin for a memorial to victims of institutional abuse, after a €31,000 spend on an earlier unsuccessful plan.

Search continues for site to remember victims of abuse

An Bord Pleanála refused permission for the proposed Journey of Light project to the rear of the Garden of Remembrance in November 2013.

The design was chosen from a competition run on foot of a recommendation of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse in 2009 to commemorate those who suffered.

Victims’ organisations were represented on a committee set up to oversee the design and commissioning of a memorial with a €500,000 budget.

In July 2012, they picked a design for a civic area with water features, seating ,and with the words of the Government apology to abuse victims to be engraved in the walls.

But after the planning appeals board took issue with the proposed overlap of the memorial on Parnell Square with the Garden of Remembrance, it was decided to look for another location.

The Department of Education said the memorial committee has advised it that the Journey of Light proposal was not transferable to another site, as it was inextricably linked with the Garden of Remembrance.

“The committee considered that any new competition should be open to conceptual and site-specific proposals, and that a central Dublin location be identified on a cost-neutral basis with appropriate zoning,” a department spokesperson said.

Consultations are now taking place between the department, the Office of Public Works (OPW), and Dublin City Council to identify a suitable location in the centre of Dublin, and to decide how best to progress the project.

The spokesperson said a capital provision of €500,000 is provided for the memorial in the department’s 2015 budget.

A sum of €31,000 was spent on the design and planning process for the Journey of Light proposal.

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