I propose to take Questions Nos. 684 and 685 together.
The National Monuments Acts 1930 to 2014 define “national monument” as meaning (in summary) any monument the preservation of which is a matter of national importance by reason of the historical, architectural, traditional, artistic, or archaeological interest attaching to it. Therefore, the Minister does not have, under the Acts, a function as such of designating monuments as national monuments other than by way of the exercise of a number of specified functions which she may, at her discretion, exercise in respect of a monument which, in her opinion, is a national monument. These functions are the power to make preservation orders or temporary preservation orders in respect of national monuments which are in danger, the power to become guardian of a national monument and the power to acquire national monuments. In exercising these functions the Minister has access to advice from the Department’s Chief Archaeologist and other legal assistance as necessary.
The national monuments referred to in my reply Question Nos. 30 and 35 on 21 June 2018 are the Gate Lodge at Askeaton Castle in County Limerick and the buildings at Nos. 14 to 17 Moore Street in Dublin city centre. They were acquired in 2015 for the purposes of conservation, management and presentation to the public and both benefit from the protections of the National Monuments Acts.