Something fishy has being going on in the Glens of Antrim and now a councillor is calling on the public to help solve the long running mystery of a missing tourism landmark.
Three years ago a popular wooden sculpture of a salmon – believed to have been over a metre in length – in Glenarm Forest caught the eye of thieves.
It was one of a number of wooden sculptures dotted around public walkways in the forest and families out for a stroll loved nothing better than sitting their young children on the wooden salmon for photos.
However, the salmon scuplture was stolen and has yet to be reeled in.
A sign at the forest tells how four sculptures – a salmon, squirrel, totem pole and ‘Spirit of the Forest’ – ‘symbolise the balanced relationship that exists between nature and mankind in this special place’.
That was ignored by the fishy thieves.
As the sculptures were originally put in as part of a designated funding package, councillors have been told a replacement will not be provided.
The fishy tale resurfaced after Mid & East Antrim Borough Council renewed a five year licence agreement with the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) to maintain the sculptures.
Councillor Mark McKinty asked the Council if there were any plans to replace the fish and the response from council officials was that a new salmon would not be landed.
The reply, reported in council minutes, stated the salmon sculpture was “stolen from the site in 2015 and at the time was reported to the PSNI”.
The council reply continued: “There was a suggestion as to the whereabouts of the salmon but site visits could not identify it. At this point in time there are no plans to replace it as these sculptures were provided through a funded project”.
Cllr McKinty would like to see a resolution and is appealing for the public’s help.
He said: “Obviously the sculpture is one of a number as part of a trail project, so the fish won’t be replaced and can only be installed again if it is returned. I would appeal to anyone with information to do that or speak to the Council”.
Spokesmen at the Council and DAERA had no more knowledge regarding the missing salmon sculpture.