More questions for the Office of Public Works

Sent the following email to the Office of Public Works (OPW) in my continuing efforts to get some answers regarding the missing art work from Leinster House.

Dear,

In your email of Thursday 8th November regarding the art work missing from Leinster House you state that the OPW is not in a position to confirm that items are missing.

I would be grateful if you could clarify the following statements and claims as reported in the Sunday Independent dated Sunday October 21st.

Thirty-seven pieces of state-owned art work are missing or “unaccounted for” from within Leinster House, it has been confirmed.

Is this statement true?

Did an OPW spokesperson confirm to the Sunday Independent that 37 pieces of state-owned art work are missing or unaccounted for?

Is the reference to ‘missing’ items incorrect?

Individual paintings, prints, statues and other pieces of state-owned art work assigned to the Leinster House complex, under the charge of the Office of Public Works (OPW), have been misplaced following the largest changeover of offices because of the general election last year.

Is this statement true?

An initial inventory of the State’s art collection has been completed and it found that 37 pieces of art work from within Leinster House are “unaccounted for”, the OPW has confirmed.

Is this statement true?

Did an OPW spokesperson confirm to the Sunday Independent that an initial inventory found that 37 pieces of art work were unaccounted for?

Often, when staff move offices, they take art work they like with them and this poses great difficulty to the OPW and management staff in Leinster House to keep a track on them, the spokesman said.

Is this statement true?

The OPW was not in a position to put a valuation on the collection, or the missing pieces, but said none of the pieces in question was of “critical importance”.

Is this statement true?

Is the reference to ‘missing’ pieces incorrect?

The OPW said that while a number of pieces are unaccounted for since the general election, others have been missing since before that.

Is this statement true?

Is the reference to ‘missing’ pieces incorrect?

Clearly there is some confusion between your statement that the OPW is not in a position to confirm that items are missing and the Sunday Independent report which clearly confirms an OPW spokesperson as saying that items are missing.

To help you in your reply I contacted the Sunday Independent and they have confirmed to me that they did speak at length with a spokesperson from the OPW.

The Sunday Independent stated that the OPW confirmed all the details of the story.

The Sunday Independent stated that the OPW at no time complained or objected to the story in terms of its accuracy.

The Sunday Independent stated that the OPW has made no request for the story to be withdrawn or amended as a result of inaccuracies.

Yours Sincerely

Anthony Sheridan

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