Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Ceisteanna (943)

Seán Ryan

Ceist:

976 Mr. S. Ryan asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government the status on the Drumanagh archaeological site in Loughshinney, County Dublin; if he will initiate the process for the acquisition or purchase of this ancient site by the Government; if he will arrange to have an archaeological dig to establish and evaluate the full potential of the site; and if in the interim he will arrange for the necessary protection to be provided to safeguard the site from illegal and vandalising behaviour. [15138/07]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government)

The promontory fort at Drumanagh, Loughshinney, County Dublin is a national monument in private ownership which is protected by Preservation Order No. 13 of 1977. The owners of such monuments have a responsibility to ensure they are secured and protected.

My Department has contacted the owner's representatives to request that improved protective measures be undertaken and the Gardaí have also been contacted about threats to the national monument. My Department continues to monitor the monument through regular site visits and is pursuing the question of improved protection with the relevant parties.

In view of the huge archaeological importance of this site the Department is reviewing all options in relation to the protection of the national monument, including acquisition or purchase. My Department has no proposals at present to excavate this site.