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Since the turn of the millienium, love locks have become frequent sights around the world. In Dublin, you’ll find them all over the Ha’penny Bridge.

Love Lock on the Ha'Penny Bridge (photo by Sean O'Donnell, via cc license from Flickr)

Early stage love lock infestation on the Ha’Penny Bridge (2011). (photo by Sean O’Donnell, via cc license from Flickr)

What is a love lock?

Well basically, courting couples write their names or initials on a padlock and attach it to an immovable object, before throwing away the key, and thus (they hope) making their love affair as enduring as the building to which it is now securely attached. (Altogether now: “Awwww!”)

Where did the idea for love locks come from?

The origin of the trend is contested, but it appears to have started in the Far East, in China or Korea, before being spread by travelers — a bit like the bird flu. (And, as far as Dublin City Council are concerned, about as welcome.) Read the rest of this entry »