Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Questions (73)

Regina Doherty


73. Deputy Regina Doherty asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the documents relating to Skyrne Tower, County Meath, that were handed over to the Office of Public Works when it passed from private family ownership; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23884/14]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

The Commissioners of Public Works retain no documents relating to the transfer of Skyrne Tower from private family ownership to the State. The site actually came into public ownership following the Irish Church Act of 1869. The 1869 Irish Church Act held as a premise belief that Churches covered by the Act were to be preserved as National Monuments and not used as places of public worship: Section 25 (1) of the Act vested certain ecclesiastical buildings in the Commissioners of Public Works in Ireland on condition that the properties were wholly disused as places of public worship and not suitable for later restoration for that purpose. The Commissioners of Church Temporalities in Ireland Reports 1869 to 1880, Appendix 7, lists Skyrne "Ruins of Church and two Stone Crosses" as one of 107 Churches in the Diocese of Meath that was vested in the ownership of the Commissioners of Public Works for preservation as a National Monument.