Vandals target Strokestown House Gardens

    Youths who caused significant damage when they went on a late-night vandalism spree in the grounds of Strokestown Park House may have been putting their lives in danger. Mr. Declan Jones of Strokestown Park House told the People this week that he believes youths from the locality were responsible for the vandalism-which involved driving a tractor across tennis courts and damaging both the courts and a section of the herbaceous border at the Gardens. Mr. Jones said that quite apart from the wanton vandalism – which he strongly condemned – he is concerned that intruders could be putting their lives at risk if they continue to carry out random acts of vandalism at the renowned tourist location. Strokestown Park House and Walled Gardens open to the public for the first time in 2007 this weekend (Saturday 17th) but the preparations for the new ‘season’ were in some disarray in recent days after the latest in a number of acts of vandalism were perpetrated there. Mr. Jones, who is Managing Director of the Property Division at Strokestown Park House, told the People that youths broke into the grounds last week and took possession of a tractor. They proceeded to drive across the tennis courts, causing significant damage. They also damaged part of the herbaceous border of the Gardens and attempted but failed to break into the Rose Garden. ‘More worryingly they drove part of the tractor into a pond – one wheel got wet – and that pond is three feet deep. I don’t think they realise how easily a tragedy  could occur’ Declan said. ‘It was very dangerous behaviour. We have had a number of these intrusions