Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Questions (146)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

146. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if his attention has been drawn to the current state of national monuments DG025-029001, DG025-029003, DG025-029006, DG025-029004, DG025-029005,  DG025-029002, and their grounds and access roads at present; if he will ensure that access to these national monuments is upgraded and the vicinity in which they stand is enhanced; if he will provide an undertaking to have signage and information on the history of this national monument erected in the vicinity of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32419/13]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

Ray Church and Cross, at Falcarragh, Co. Donegal, is a National Monument in State ownership (DG025-029001 and 029003) and comes within the statutory remit of the Office Public Works (OPW) as defined in the various National Monument Acts. These structures are therefore afforded the full protection of the State as defined in the legislation.

The other structures identified by the Deputy in his Question (ie: reference nos. 029002, 004 – 006) are not listed on the National Monuments records of Monuments in State care.

Ray Church and Cross monument attracts a certain number of visitors and, for protection and conservation reasons, the Cross has been mounted on the inside of the Church walls. The Cross is cut from a thin sheet of stone, is undecorated and stands over 9m tall. Access to the Monument is by lane/roadway which is privately owned and arrangements are in place to allow OPW staff to access the Monument for care and maintenance. The OPW is not aware of any formalised right of access for members of the public currently; however, there is evidence that visitors may be able to gain access relatively freely.

There are no plans currently to erect signage and information panels in the vicinity of the site.