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Sinkhole which split GAA pitch emerged after mine's pillars collapsed

A sinkhole has split a GAA pitch in Co Monaghan. Picture from Twitter

A SINKHOLE which destroyed a GAA pitch was caused by the collapse of pillars in a mine under the club's ground, the mining company has said.

The sinkhole, which emerged near Carrickmacross in Co Monaghan on Monday, caused severe damage to Magheracloone Mitchells GAC's grounds and buildings.

The club said its ground will be shut "for years" following the collapse.

Drumgossatt National School was forced to evacuate after the sinkhole emerged. The school reopened the following day.

Mining company Gyproc Ireland warned there could be further subsidence as the land settles.

It said an assessment of the site found the collapse happened due to a "unique and complex set of circumstances".

"The initial report has identified that recent mining operations involving the transport and storage of water in an old part of the mine, previously unused for water storage, resulted in the collapse of some mining pillars and this is the probable reason for the subsidence," a company spokesman said.

The company confirmed the subsidence is confined to a specific area.

"Within this 120m radius area at the GAA club there is the possibility of further subsidence as the ground settles over the coming weeks," it said.

"Gyproc is confident that this will be confined within this 120m radius."

The company is also investigating an area near the sinkhole, including land housing five homes and two public roads.

A spokesman said the company was in contact with the families and had appointed a family liaison officer to help the homeowners.

He added: "Gyproc remains in regular contact with Magheracloone GAA Club and community centre and has also offered its support to replace the damaged facility".

He said the company was also in contact with Monaghan County Council and other authorities to "assess the situation and ensure appropriate support measures are in place to minimise disruption".

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