The family of a young man, who was murdered in Mayo in 2017, say they're very upset by  Mayo County Council's decision to take down roadside memorials which were erected in his memory.

21-year old Joe Deacy from St Alban's, Hertfordshire in the UK  was discovered with head injuries outside a house at Gortnasillagh, Swinford on Saturday 12 August 2017.

He later passed away in hospital, and Gardai subsequently launched a murder investigation.

Last Summer, a memorial in his memory on the N5 at Bohola was vandalised.

Just before Christmas, two new memorials were erected by family members in Mayo - one on the N5 and the other on the Kinnaffe Road.

A family member told Midwest News today that the memorials are an important part of the healing process for Joe's extended family and friends.

However, they received a call from Mayo County Council this morning explaining that the memorials will be removed immediately because of visual distraction to passing motorists.

This evening, the late Joe Deacy's father Adrian spoke to Midwest News from the UK.

He said he understands that a number of similar roadside memorials have been erected in the past, without planning permission, for victims of tragic incidents, and he questioned why the memorials for his son are now being targeted by the council.

In response to a query from Midwest News, Mayo County Council confirmed that the roadside monuments will be removed.

In a statement, the council said that, as a local authority, it respects the need for people to erect roadside memorials, but must also provide a safe and efficient road network for all road users, as safety of all road users is a top priority.

The statement concludes that the issue of roadside memorials will be on the agenda for discussion at the next meeting of the council's Road & Transport SPC (special policy committee).



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