A cannon linked action to a fortune in gold has been unveiled at Downings Pier

A cannon linked to a fortune in gold has been unveiled as a tourist attraction at Downings Pier more than 90 years after it sank to the seabed 39 metres down in the mouth of Lough Swilly.

The 7m-long gun weighing more than seven tons was lifted on to the pier at Downings 2½ years ago after a three-year salvage recovery operation headed by a team of local divers.

It was lifted from the wreck of the 15,000-ton Laurentic, a luxury liner built in 1908 by Harland and Wolff in Belfast and sunk by German mines in January, 1917, shortly after sailing from Buncrana when on service as a first World War merchant cruiser.

Fine Gael councillor Noel McBride, who persuaded Donegal County Council to donate €8,000 to the €15,000 cost of turning the gun into a tourist attraction, says the donation was money well spent.

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