With only days until the papal visit in Dublin, the 'Somebody's Child' memorial in Temple Bar hit the headlines when it was discovered to be covered up with netting.
People were outraged online to find that the memorial had been blocked up entirely and it was subsequently torn down.
The monument has the names of the 796 babies who were buried in a septic tank behind St Mary’s Mother and Baby home in Tuam, Co Galway.
View this post on Instagram
UPDATE: Mannix Flynn has confirmed that the netting was erected as the piece is being updated ahead of the weekend. The 'Somebody's Child' memorial in Temple Bar has been covered up days before the Pope arrives into Dublin... If you're unaware of it, it's somewhere between a memorial and a public art piece. It contains the names and birthdates of children who died in care in Ireland. The names are listed in panel after panel of text. Beneath the text are dozens of empty silver nameplates – the kind that typically appear on coffins – to mark those children whose names are not known nor properly buried. Thank you to @thibaultmontagne for the image.
However, Mannix Flynn - the person who put up the netting originally and is the person who monitors the site - released a statement explaining why this happened ahead of the pope's visit.
"Last night the protective netting that I placed on the site at Exchange Street was torn down deliberately. This netting was to allow us to put up a new response to Pope Francis’s visit.
"This temp piece of work sends out a clear message and is in keeping with the 15-year project that we have been working on on this site.
"A lot of hard work went into last night's work and it all has to be redone today. You are all welcome to visit the site today as we will be erecting the new piece at 9am [Thursday morning] and we hope to be finished by this afternoon.
"I appreciate the concerns of people who thought that someone was covering up ‘Somebody’s Child’ work and Disband the Artane Band panels but the person who took the image and put up the blog last night inciting people to tear down the protective netting never bothered to ask me, as I was on the site putting up the net, what was happening.
"Instead, they chose to incite others to attack the site. This is all time consuming and costly. So again, I invite anybody who has any concerns to come to the site today as we inaugurate the new temporary work.
"I monitor this site every day as it has been attacked a number of times. Indeed Dublin City Council Planning Department is legally threatening me to take down some of the work but that’s another issue. I will be seeking your support on that.
"Get out there now and provoke the Pope and his followers in a nice way and let us get on with the work.
"Go raibh míle maith agat.
Main image via: The Journal