Gardaí criticise 'mindless' school arson attack
on 29/10/2013 00:00:00
It is believed the perpetrators of the attack set fire to a wheelie-bin at the rear of the school.
The fire then spread to an overhead canopy and the resulting heat shattered a window in a classroom.
Some damage was done to the room, but the fire brigade arrived at the scene and stopped the blaze spreading throughout the school.
According to a Garda spokesman, it was fortunate the fire was spotted in time before it got out of control and caused serious damage.
It is believed that the fire was started some time between 8pm and 9pm on Sunday.
Humphrey Deegan, who is a member of the college's board of management, visited the scene yesterday.
"This was an act of mindless vandalism which could have jeopardised the education of hundreds of pupils," said Mr Deegan. "Fortunately the fire brigade got here in time to stop it spreading. If they hadn't, the whole building could have been destroyed."
He said the damage, which he estimated could cost up to €10,000 to repair, appeared "to be mainly cosmetic".
"However, I'm not an expert, so we will have to get a civil engineer to look at it," he said. "The children are on their mid-term break, so hopefully we can have the damage repaired before they return to school."
The scene was preserved for a technical examination, which gardaí carried out yesterday.
"We are appealing for anybody who saw anything suspicious around the school that night to get in touch with us," a Garda spokesman said.
Anybody with information is asked to contact Clonakilty Garda Station at 023 8821 570 or Dunmanway Garda Station at 023 8845 202.