Irish Republican News · December 8, 2004
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
World record bid for spy base

Rosemount Barracks in Derry is the centre of a bid for a world record with the Guinness Book of Records.

The proposed record is for the least used police station in any city on the planet.

The base, with a spy mast which towers over surrounding housing estates, is used by only member of the public a month, according to new figures.

The numbers were revealed by local PSNI chiefs following a request by the Derry-based human rights group, the Pat Finucane Centre.

It was also revealed that the base, which is open from 9am to 4pm each day, costs in the region of 275 thousand pounds sterling a year to maintain.

Residents of the Lower Creggan and Rosemount areas have long campaigned for the removal of a 100ft surveillance mast inside the base. Rosemount is one of only two PSNI bases on the west bank of the River Foyle in Derry city. Over 70,000 people live on the west bank and the area surrounding the base is a densely populated residential area.

Researchers at the Guinness Book of Records will take 5-6 weeks to research the bid and make a decision. If unsuccessful the PFC may make a bid for an alternative world title - that the surrounding population of Rosemount and Lower Creggan are the most law abiding in the world.

A spokesperson for the centre commented;

‘Of course there is a serious side to this. Rosemount Barracks is a blot on the landscape and is regarded as an intrusion. At present Health and Education Boards are struggling to find funding for things that we really need - special needs education - more beds in hospitals - the list goes on.

“Meanwhile £275,000 is wasted each year on a facility that no-one wants or needs. If a local community group received over a quarter of a million pounds a year to run a centre for the benefit of the general public and it was used by one person per month there would be calls for resignations and a police investigation into misappropriation of funds.”

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© 2004 Irish Republican News