The owner of a Co Longford hotel has said he has been left "utterly devastated" by overnight vandalism which caused tens of thousands of euros worth of damage to his premises. 

Mike Cooney told of his anguish at receiving a call late last night to inform him that three bespoke, hand crafted windows had been smashed in at his family run Cooney's hotel in Ballymahon. 

"My wife and son had only just got in the door and we were sitting down having a chat when we got the call," he said. 

It is believed a rock or stone was thrown at the windows at around 11:40pm, just minutes after the hotel had been locked up for the night. 

The damaged windows have been in situ at the well-established local business since it opened 14 years ago and, according to Mr Cooney, were engineered specifically for the hotel. 

"It's just absolutely devastating," said the hotelier, who has been battling ill health himself over the past number of months. 

"Especially when we have been doing our best to get through this pandemic and do everything right, to have this bombshell land on us is completely senseless," added Mr Cooney.

Gardaí sealed off the scene last night and are due to carry out a technical examination today. Anyone with any information is asked to contact Longford Garda Station at (043) 3350570. 

They are also keen to speak with any taxi drivers who may have possible dash cam footage of the incident.