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Search words: tara

M3 Opening June Bank Holiday 2010

category international | history and heritage | press release author Thursday May 20, 2010 17:24author by Carmel Diviney - Tara Skryne Preservation Group Report this post to the editors

Blundelstown Interchange
Blundelstown Interchange

Please stand with us on June 4th as the last stretch of the €1 billion double tolled M3 Motorway opens in time for the June Bank Holiday weekend. The controversial M3 which runs through the tara Skryne Valley desecrating ancient monuments and burial grounds drew much protest and outrage from people all around the world because of the chosen route and allegations of political corruption. Currently there is an EU court case against the Irish Govt. over it's destruction of the Lismullin National Monument and non compliance with Environmental Impact Assessments.

You are warmly invited to attend Banner Making Workshops and talks over the next two wekends at the Vigil Camp on Belpere Farm situated down the road from Rath Maeve. There is plenty of room for camping! Please ring the Vigil Phone on 0861758557 for directions and further details.

Anyone who ever stood against this Motorway and all who abhor the destruction of our heritage are asked to BE THERE JUNE 4TH.

If you cannot make it in person please donate towards the costs of materials etc at .

Thank you.

Related Link:
author by Imbolc57 - Privatepublication date Thu May 20, 2010 18:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

If this is progress, who wants it.

by Philip Larkin. (January 1972)

I thought it would last my time -
The sense that, beyond the town,
There would always be fields and farms,
Where the village louts could climb
Such trees as were not cut down;
I knew there'd be false alarms

In the papers about old streets
And split level shopping, but some
Have always been left so far;
And when the old part retreats
As the bleak high-risers come
We can always escape in the car.

Things are tougher than we are, just
As earth will always respond
However we mess it about;
Chuck filth in the sea, if you must:
The tides will be clean beyond.
- But what do I feel now? Doubt?

Or age, simply? The crowd
Is young in the M1 cafe;
Their kids are screaming for more -
More houses, more parking allowed,
More caravan sites, more pay.
On the Business Page, a score

Of spectacled grins approve
Some takeover bid that entails
Five per cent profit (and ten
Per cent more in the estuaries): move
Your works to the unspoilt dales
(Grey area grants)! And when

You try to get near the sea
In summer . . .
It seems, just now,
To be happening so very fast;
Despite all the land left free
For the first time I feel somehow
That it isn't going to last,

That before I snuff it, the whole
Boiling will be bricked in
Except for the tourist parts -
First slum of Europe: a role
It won't be hard to win,
With a cast of crooks and tarts.

And that will be England gone,
The shadows, the meadows, the lanes,
The guildhalls, the carved choirs.
There'll be books; it will linger on
In galleries; but all that remains
For us will be concrete and tyres.

Most things are never meant.
This won't be, most likely; but greeds
And garbage are too thick-strewn
To be swept up now, or invent
Excuses that make them all needs.
I just think it will happen, soon.

Philip Larkin.

author by bpublication date Thu May 20, 2010 20:33author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Substitute ireland for England and change a few details, and that could have been written today about us.
Yet it was written 30 or 40 years ago, not sure of the date.
We had a chance to do it right and learn from others mistakes but the people we elected failed to see beyond their own ever lengthening lying pinnochio noses.

author by Pseudonympublication date Fri May 21, 2010 00:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

That photo is not of Blundelstown, but seems to be used a lot in the Tara campaign. I know the lay of the land fairly well around the Valley and I can't figure out where this photo comes from. Any ideas anyone?

author by Michael Wpublication date Fri May 21, 2010 08:45author address author phone Report this post to the editors

One interchange is the same as the next, fact remains that the 6 lane interchange in such a sensitive area should never have been allowed to happen. Where will the bastards be on opening day? They will surely want a big press call for the big occasion.

author by Carmel Divineypublication date Fri May 21, 2010 08:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's the M3 at Clonee, my apologies it must have got mixed in with my Blundelstown folder. We dont have any information as yet on what "they" are planning for the big day out but if anyone can get us some leads it would be greatly appreciated :)

Hopefully there will be a fanfare surrounding "Dempsey's Vanity Project" unlike the turn the sod ceremony at Lismullin where everything was top secret in case those "bongo playing tree huggers" turned up.

We just want to join in the fun :)

Related Link:
author by Carmel Divineypublication date Fri May 21, 2010 12:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

As the poster says :)


author by Gerpublication date Mon May 24, 2010 15:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

No response from Vigil phone number, could someone give me directions as I can make it there next weekend. Thanks.

author by Tara Tara Tarapublication date Mon May 24, 2010 15:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Vigil ph is usually off to save battery but it is checked regularly for messages and someone will get back to you. Below is a map which may help but Belper Farm is easy to find. Standing at Tara with the coffee shop behind you, carry on down the road towards the right and Rath Maeve, keep on going Belper farm is in behind the second house on the right hand side. Remember to close all gates behind you, have fun :)

Vigil Camp at Belper Farm
Vigil Camp at Belper Farm


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author by Carmel Diviney - Tara Skryne Preservation Grouppublication date Tue May 25, 2010 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The M3 in all its glory:

M3 N3 Junction at Blundelstown
M3 N3 Junction at Blundelstown

M3 Bridge over the Boyne- no footpaths!
M3 Bridge over the Boyne- no footpaths!

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author by Carmel Divineypublication date Wed May 26, 2010 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Speaking of locals Phillistine, take a look at the videos on this website and see what they have to contend with. In addition to no footpaths at the roundabouts there are no footpaths on the bridge at Collierstown so people can get to schools, shops and churches while over at Baronstown there are footpaths on either side of the bridge going absolutely nowhere! There are no footpaths on the bridge over the Boyne either so that the Columban Fathers etc can get out and over to Tara. With all that money spent you'd wonder who approved the design. Nah, I'm past wondering. I only feel pity now for the ones who continue to espouse it. The M3 is one disaster after another.

Oh and by the way we are having great fun counting the amount of soft spots showing up on the Motorway especially between Collierstown and Lismullin. I took this photo near Rath Lugh where several soft spots have had to be repaired, some up to a foot deep along the wall. Even sections of the dividing wall have had to be replaced. We found another one at Ardsallagh last week :)

Sinking feeling- near Rath Lugh April 2010
Sinking feeling- near Rath Lugh April 2010

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author by Pixiepublication date Wed May 26, 2010 15:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

And a big one at Trevett 2 days ago :) Thats what happens when you build on swamp.

author by Road Userpublication date Thu May 27, 2010 11:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Since when have there been Footpaths on motorways ?

author by Tara Tara Tarapublication date Thu May 27, 2010 12:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Road User, do I really need to explain that to you. Obviously you didnt take a look at the M3 Roundabouts website. If you cut off a community from its hub with any road scheme you must provide safe access eg bridges, footpaths or even tunnels for kids to get to school etc.


The M3 is actaully a dual carriageway right through the Valley except at Blundelstown. It has a cheek to call itself a Motorway. Maybe they think that helps explain/ justify the €1billion they spent on it in their warped way of thinking.

author by TaraTaraTarapublication date Thu May 27, 2010 14:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Planning permission for the M3 (DER2014) has specific requirements for Footpaths and cycle-lanes. In some cases there is absolutely no sign of any work, and in some cases the work completed falls far short of requirements.

Meath County Council apparently "facilitate walking and keeping with European Charter of Pedestrian Rights" (word doc, 95kb) and the Meath Development Plan is supposed to ensure the needs of pedestrians and cyclists are taken into account in the design and planning of infrastructure (Infrastructure Chapter, PDF 1MB)

Department of the Environment best practices for new developments (such as a roundabout) have a "key build sustainable communities" (PDF 2Mb). Meeting the needs of the pedestrian and cyclist is an important part of sustainable neighbourhoods (Page 28), which are important for stable and caring society, the economy and competitiveness. Government Ministers do not appear to have worked with stakeholders to deliver on integrated policies - and our communities suffer. "

Related Link:
author by Carmel Diviney - TSPGpublication date Sat May 29, 2010 13:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

If people were actually "informed" they would see the rubbish spewing above for what it is but seeing as the poster/s are obviously ignorant I can only feel pity. I am still working on compassion. However there is no compassion for the Politicians who hatched the evil plan, they have damned themselves forever. Unfortunately they will be taking a whole lot of other people down with them on their Highway To Hell.

Keep the blinkers on you guys and enjoy the song :)

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author by Kyrie Murraypublication date Sun May 30, 2010 10:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Curse of Tara

In a rage she stood there.
She had red fiery hair.
And a cloak of emerald green.
With an icy cold glare.
And a bewildering stare.
Thus spoke Tara Hill's.
Ancient Queen.

'You will soon rue the day.
And for it you'll pay.
You violated my sacred mound.
So what could be worse.
Than a Royal black curse.'
Then she knelt on Rath Lugh's.
Mossy Ground.

In the air was a chill.
Then the rath it did fill.
With the rays of the rising sun.
As she basked in it's glow.
She said 'I'll soon bring snow.
And damn you to Hell with.
It's Chill.

With a 'Black Curse' so old.
Warm weather will turn cold.
And freeze with it's icy breath.
Every living creature there.
That ever breathed air.
And chill them to a cold.
Freezing Death.

Under a blanket of snow.
My Gabhra won't flow.
In nuclear winter's icy tomb.
So much for 'progress'.
When ye all will regress.
To 'when ye wielded stone axes.
And savagely howled at.
The Moon.


author by Carmel Divineypublication date Sun May 30, 2010 11:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The following letter was sent to Press but was only printed ( edited) by an Irish American newspaper as far as I know. There are so many more incidents and headlines that could be added to it since it was written. Coincidence?

The Curse of Tara,

A modern day Curse of Tara has been unleashed on Ireland by the destruction and desecration of the Tara Skryne Valley by the M3 Motorway construction.. Famously, Seannachaí Eddie Lennihan warned the Govt in early 2007 against destroying the Fairy Forts or endure their curse but an NRA Spokesperson mockingly replied in a national newspaper that they were not concerned, not one bit. Maybe they should have been...

In June 2007 Minister for the Environment Dick Roche signed off on the Lismullin Henge allowing it to be destroyed. Lismullin Henge was a 4000 year old astronomical observatory and place of worship and hailed as one of the most important archaeological finds of the century. Since then Roche lost his job with all its perks and was demoted on the formation of a new Government. He subsequently was held up in the Druids Glen Hotel. Wonder if he has ever heard of a little thing called Karma ?

Martin Cullen the then Minister for Transport nearly got sucked out of a helicopter when the door fell off on one of his extravagantly expensive trips. Look how Bertie fared in the Tribunals and then he broke his leg. Noel Dempsey, the current Minister for Transport famous for his fiasco of an idea on voting machines left the country at the outset of a national emergency proving that we don’t need a Minister for Transport, especially this one. He too, was also shamed in another expenses scandal. The NRA have gone €16 billion over budget on his watch and Ferrovial, the main contractor on the M3 Motorway are €28 billion in debt

The economic woes of the country began in July 07 at the time of the Operation Bedrock arrests. It certainly seems to be part of the curse our Govt has unleashed upon the people through desecrating the sacred sites of the Tara Skryne Valley. In ancient times when a King was guilty of making bad decisions or ruled during the failure of the harvest, he was seen to have brought havoc to the land and to the tribes. He was deposed and replaced, just as this FF and Green government will be for their wanton destruction of our precious heritage.
The summer of 07 was when that destruction started in earnest and was when the weather started to change dramatically too. The Greens came into power and it didn’t stop raining for ten weeks.The M50 and N3 were inundated several times, a warning that the new M3 culverts were inadequate to deal with Mother Nature’s response to the hideous scar on the landscape. Most memorable were the floods of Aug 2008 which occurred two weeks after the crib wall was erected at Rath Lugh. Three feet of water engulfed the area. The chief Health and Safety Officer was seriously injured by a falling tree when felling began at Rath Lugh in 2007 and last year one unfortunate worker was killed when he became trapped at Fairyhouse. There have been many accidents on this stretch of road.

Over at Baronstown they destroyed the famous ancient feasting grounds and gathering place of ancient Harpers. A digger leaving the site, fell off a low loader onto the N3. One of the protesters, extracted a human tooth from the track of the digger. Shortly afterwards the stairs in the National Museum collapsed and even the Irish Independent did an article on the spookiness of it all.

That same summer, several large wasp nests were found throughout the valley. In Celtic Lore the appearance of the wasp was associated with the anger of Mother Earth.

What happens at Tara affects the whole world and this Govt has unleashed something that will have repercussions everywhere for a long time to come especially from the latter part of this year when the road opens.

The moral of the story?
Dont mess with Tara. Dont mess with Sacred ground.

Carmel Diviney

author by idiocracypublication date Sun May 30, 2010 13:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

nah, most of that stuff just happened because those people were FF idiots. They were bound to fuck up badly sooner or later. Look at the mess they made of their jobs? We don't need to invoke the gods of tara or mother earth. stupidity and incompetence on their own are enough

author by supporterpublication date Mon May 31, 2010 17:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The N8 was opened last week at mid day at the toll plaza. I'm sure that would be the place to go to near Dunsauhlin- they will want a photo op to rub it in.

author by Petrolheadpublication date Mon May 31, 2010 20:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors

On balance, I'm pleased to hear the motorway is to open at last. We should have had this about 20 years ago. Shorter journey times, more efficient fuel consumption (less greenhouse gases if that floats your boat) and, most of all, vastly less road fatalities. Motorways are statistically far safer than any other type of road. As is borne out by the dramatic reduction in fatalities on Irish roads post the dramatic increase in our motorway network.

On the other hand of course, it was far too expensive; the tolls are an unfair imposition on the already hard pressed motorist and the toll company can reap bumper profits at the expense of the Irsh taxpayer. But better an overpriced road than none at all, I suppose.

Great news for the Cork langers too - only took ninety years after independence to connect up the two biggest cities in the Republic. Three, ok then two and a bit, cheers for the NRA.

Now how about proper roads throughout the rest of the country. And a feew service stations wouldn't go amiss either - it's called joined up thinking. (You can drive from Belfast to Cork without passing a filling station - nuts!!)

(Note to public transport fetishists: it's not an either/or thing - you can have both. They manage it in France, for example.)

author by Bored to deathpublication date Mon May 31, 2010 21:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Simple answer...none, regardless of which route was chosen somebody would have been unhappy and tried to have it re-reouted. Just a couple of points:

- The Hill Of Tara complex is untouched by this road - truth be told it'll make accessing the hill easier for the schools trips etc that regularly clog the roads during the summer months and make it easier for tourists to find and access (lets face it - if you didn't know where it was you'd easily miss it its so poorly signposted!)

- Regardless of where you dig in this country (and especially this county) you are going to find something of archeological/historical interest.

- The arguement against tolls (which in principle I'm for but the manner in which they are managed is wrong) has nothing to do with the campaign and are only the last desperate arguements of those who have had their day in court and will not accept the decision made by the constitutional courts of this country.

- Every single public representative in Meath, from all of the major parties were in favour of this road and route so railing against this government and FF is pointless because FG/LAB et al would have done *exactly* the same thing.

- looking for footpaths and cycle lanes......on a motorway???? Read the rules of the road, but I'll paraphrase...No Cyclists, No Pedestrians

- the road will bring investment along the corridor, simple fact of the matter is that Dublin is now full and industry will follow the major transport arteries so this is a GOOD thing for the people of Meath/Cavan

Simple fact of the matter is that the road will now mean a 1 hour commute each way from Navan to Dublin at peak times...thats an extra 10 hours per week for commuters to spend with their kids and families. How many of the nay sayers on this forum are currently suffering the 2 commute hell on a daily basis??? Not many I'd suggest and I'd say some of them aren't even from this country let alone county and are in love with an old romantic notion of 1950's Ireland where no-one went outside their own village. For a race that has historically placed great emphasis on children and the family surely thats a good thing?

The professional protestors will soon have another fight with the proposed road at Bru Na Boinne so dont worry folks, you'll only be bored for a short length of time unlike me who is fed up with the constant whinging over this road. The road is opening on the 4th, build a bridge (that was too easy!), get over it.

author by simple is rightpublication date Mon May 31, 2010 23:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"fact of the matter is that Dublin is now full"

If you believe that, you are a complete idiot. The only thing Dublin is full of is empty buildings.

author by citizenpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 03:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

do your research. this route was actually longer than it needed to be and was far from the optimal one. Perhaps it had something to do with certain people's land values. who knows. "especially in this country". And BTW whilst there are indeed lots of things to find once you start to dig in Ireland, not all of them would have remotely the significance of tara.
The taxpayer will be paying through the nose to meet the shortfall in traffic on this motorway for years to come as a result of the absolutely ridiculous (probably corrupt) deal done with the toll company. the Irish people were screwed by politicians and businessmen yet again. they had their heritage erased while their pocket was being picked, all so a few greedy people (and likely some FF politicians) could profit

author by LogicalHousingpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 03:25author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Perhaps the solution to the insane 2 hour commute is to move those people into all the empty accomodation now owned by nama and closer to their jobs instead of building a road through our national heritage and a tourist attraction.

author by Bored To Deathpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 09:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

@simple is right

Read the rules for this forum - play the ball not the man. But to humour you I am actually, not an idiot. The lack of development land for business/industry is something that has been an issue in the greater Dublin area for many years now. The type of businesses (such as pharmaceuticals etc) that this country needs to attract to keep its people working require rapid transport links with large tracts of land and these are simply no longer available in Dublin. Maybe you'd prefer we were all on the dole?


I would agree, the road is propbably longer than it needed to be. I would also agree that the route is probably not the optimal one.

No where in this country would have the significance of Tara??? Bru Na Boinne, Rock of Cashel, The Curragh, The Bog Of Allen (all of which by the way have had new motorways built over, through or near them to no detrimental affect.

The issue of tolls is another side issue trying to prolong this arguement, it has nothing to do with the route chosen or Tara but again I agree with you that the way tolls are managed is completely wrong. You seem to have a huge issue with FF but as I said every singe elected representative from the mainstream parties in Meatch were favour of this road so it would have happened anyway regardless of which party/parties were in power.


People chose to buy the houses in Meath/Cavan because they were affordable compared to Dublin prices and the areas they moved to offered a better quality of life. At least it was in my case and having lived in Meath for 15 years now I love it and would never contemplate moving back. Yes the commute was a nightmare (I now fortunately work in Meath too) but it had to be done. Not everyone is as fortunate as me and still have to suffer the nightmare so why begrudge them a bit of an easier life and more time with their kids/families?? As for shipping us all back to Dublin, well, the money that has been brought into towns like Navan/Kells etc would dry up fairly quickly but if killing the county is what you want then go ahead with your small minded plan and then spend the next 10 years complaining that everything that is done is done for Dublin...well, if thats where eveyone is living following your plan thats what will have to done....theres no point in developing areas where no-one lives or no-one can get to. Alternatively maybe if the jobs moved a little bit closer to them as they can now do with the new road, more money will come to the towns and people will have more time to spend in those towns with their families and kids? Or maybe you too like our friend @simple is right would prefer we were all on the dole.

The "tourist attraction" that is Tara itself is untouched by this motorway and that is a fact that no-one can deny. And as a tourist attraction it is now easier and quicker to access for those tourists. The overall significance of the Tara-Skryne valley is open for debate but I do find it odd how it was never an issue until after the route was planned but the hill of Tara itself was left untouched, to my mind it became a secondary tool to back up the anti-M3 arguement.

@all - The M3 as it is is not ideal and as I agreed earlier may not be built on the best route but is has been built and will open and the greater good of the people of this county and country will be served and surely that is a good thing?

author by NRA Archaeologistpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 16:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"And BTW whilst there are indeed lots of things to find once you start to dig in Ireland, not all of them would have remotely the significance of tara."

The NRA has a team of dedicated Archaeologists.

Every inch of the land on which the road was to be build was minutely examined by
the team of archaeologiste employed by the NRA.

They found things which would NEVER have been found without the road.

Everything they discovered can be freely accessed here:

See NRA Archaeology overview website here:


author by Amateur Archaeologistpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 17:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This link shows the latest NRA Archaeological News.
(And a lot of news there is.):

So much for philistine road builders.

author by Morriganpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 18:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Remember Maggie Ronayne who outed the flawed NRA led Archaeology on the road? Keep it Amateur and if you say nothing you might get a job on the next dig.

M3 Motorway and the World Acrchaeological Congress Video below.

Related Link:
author by Morriganpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 18:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Bored to Death, me too!

I think you are pretty level headed so I wont dig around too much (excuse the pun) cos its too tiring repeating the same thing over and over - but how can you say Tara is better accessed now? To get there you still have to use the old N3 and as for signage thats an easy fix, even Meath County Council could have got that right with a bit of effort if they wanted to. Lets hope the Tara Landscape Project ushers in a bit of protection for the Tara Skryne Valley and the TARA COMPLEX. Did you know it has been rceognised as such? After the amateur archaeologists were let loose that is.


author by Bored To Deathpublication date Tue Jun 01, 2010 19:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors


thanks, its nice to have a discussion with someone, which is what these forums should be about, rather than a name slinging match.

I'll attempt to address your two questions:

With regards to access, obviously I mean it will be easier to access once the new road is open as it will no longer be necessary to travel through the bottle necks of Dunshaughlin/Navan depending on where you coming from (assuming the main N3 as the old route) - I concede there are other routes available but lets face it the minor roads in Meath require something akin to a tractor to negotiate safely and even as a local I tend to avoid! I also completely agree that the site is extremely poorly signposted and this is something that should have be addressed years ago, regardless of new roads or not!

I was actually aware of the Tara Complex as I've followed the M3 debate fairly closely. However, I still maintain the new road is further away from the complex that the existing road? This is only further borne out by pictures in a paper Maggie Ronayne herself published prior to the WAC 6 in 2008 ( Its an interesting read - I tried reading the link you posted earlier but unfortunately dont have an irish Times subscription. I'm not familar with her writings so can't comment for good or for bad but for the sake of balance I would say from reading her own bio she has a definite tendency to side against development in areas of archeological interest. Fair comment???

I also noted with interest your comment regarding amateur archeologists - not an area I know anything about but once again for fairness and balance I would ask what steps to preserve archeology the protestors took when they dug a tunnel directly into the Rath Lugh mound? This is also mentioned on the other link you posted which again to me seemed very slanted against the road but it may be a case of me viewing it from a pro-road side.

If, as many have mentioned, the Irish Govt./NRA/developers whoever are found wanting in the process for planning and building this road by the EU then they should pay the price and quite rightly too. However, I would also say the people who are planning on protesting for the sake of protesting have not helped the cause of the people who had a genuine interest in this project not proceeding.

At the end of the day, the new road opens this Friday, for good or ill. Lets just hope its for good, for everybody.

Is Mise le meas

author by Morriganpublication date Wed Jun 02, 2010 16:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The new road is nearer to the Hill of Tara than the old road, skirting its actual boundary at Blundelstown 6 lane interchange. Maybe one of the Rath Lugh protesters would like to address your point on the tunnel but it did lead to a Temporary Preservation Order on part of the Fort after drawing attention to the damage caused by the removal of the trees by the NRA. The tunnel was within the road take.

We will not be protesting just for the sake of protesting. We feel very passionately that the Motorway should never have gone through the Tara Skryne Valley. Please read the paper written by Claire Oakes on the flawed/corrupt planning procedure that led to that route being chosen. Further information on that- top shelf ,middle book at following link. I am sure as a Meath native for the last 15 years you will find that very interesting.

I also include here an exposé article from the Irish Mail on Sunday on NRA archaelogical practises below. I would like to also commend the Polish archaeologist who left the dig at Lismullin and joined the protesters after he observed some shady dealings himself. Sworboda Marcin, later arrested while protesting and subsequently had his case dismissed along with 14 others. It is nice to know that not everyone can be bought.


My findings on Tara were altered, says archaeologist

Irish Mail on Sunday - 29 June 2008 – By Luke Byrne

A LEADING archaeolgist employed to survey the M3 Tara Valley route has claimed her findings were changed to support the motorway when in fact there was evidence against it. In a devestating attack, Jo Ronayne – who was working for the National Roads Authority – says her findings were altered before being presented to ministers. Miss Ronayne, who was an excavation director at the Tara valley site in Co. Meath, claims she was told to ‘change interpretations’ so as to ‘lessen to potential of numbers of sites’. And she says she was excluded from NRA meetings in which her evidence was altered before reports were passed on to the Government. The damning allegations will shatter the Governments defence that it would not change the Tara route because there is no significant archaeological site on it. And it will lead to disturbing questions about whether ministers – and in turn the public or even the courts – were misled about the archaeological finds.

Miss Ronayne, who was directly employed by NRA subcontractor Irish Archaeological Consultancy Ltd, suggests in an explosive academic article that her role appeared to have been a sham. ‘I didn’t realise that the testing and my reports would be used to facilitate rather than stop the project going ahead. Or that they don’t let you write the truth in the reports or give you enough time to do a proper job,’ she wrote. The archaeologist – whose sister Maggie, an archaeology lecturer in NUI Galway, is due to attend today’s World Archaeological Congress in Dublin – remains utterly disenchanted with how she says her reports were used and portrayed. She said: ‘I held the licence and was responsible for the work, but the NRA archaeologist would come down and tell me what I should be doing. ‘Directors or field archaeologists working on the sites were not allowed to attend meetings where decisions were made by the NRA’s own archaeologists about how to interpret and present what we were finding.’ She added: ‘A number of times I was told to change an interpretation which served to lessen the potential numbers of sites. We were also told to excavate large sections even tough you are not supposed to excavate in the testing phase. ‘They edited our reports before the Minister saw them.’

In May 2005, following preliminary archaeological reports made by the NRA, the then-environment minister Dick Roche sanctioned 38 archaeological excavations in the Tara-Skryne valley in Co. Meath, effectively approving the route. It was reports such as those complied by Miss Ronayne that Mr Roche would have been presented with before he eventually gave his approval for the project. Following the decision to go ahead with the road, Miss Ronayne and a number of archaeologists refused to work on the excavations. Since the route of the M3 was approved, there have been a number of protests aimed at highlighting the archaeological value of the stretch of motorway.

However, the results of initial test-trenching were often highlighted by advocates of the route of the motorway. In March 2005, Frank Cosgrave of the Meath Citizens for the M3 group, told the Joint Committee on Environment and Local Government: ‘Nothing that could be described as a “national monument” has been found. At the same meeting, Cork TD Billy Kelliher said: ‘The argument put forward by the archaeologists with regard to the richness of the area is a bit of a myth.’ Labour Environment spokeswoman Joanna Tuffy said: “If this is true, I think we need to bring in a completely independent archaeological survey to make sure that anything that can be salvaged will be. ‘At this stage we’ve already gone too far so we can’t turn back.’ Miss Tuffy added: ‘This incident is something that I will raise in the Dail.

author by Amateur Archaeologistpublication date Thu Jun 03, 2010 07:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The entire Tara area has been studied by archaeologists for generations.
In minute detail.
It would be astonishing if a new "National Monument" emerged on the route of the road.

Also, Archaeologists are as fractious as Economists in interpreting data.
The raw data is completely intact.
You are free to interpret itself if you like.

The whole area is already criss-crossed by roads,both new and ancient.
It is a typical Irish rural area.

The lands over which the motorway was built have been ploughed up by farmers for countless generations.

There were no "Tutankhamun's Tombs" on the route of the motorway.

Nobody ever expected to find any..

The motorway greatly increased our knowledge of Irish Archaeology over the whole of its route.

author by TaraTaraTarapublication date Thu Jun 03, 2010 08:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You should put your name to your comments, they might give you a job.

Rath Lugh= National Monument
Lismullin= National Monument

Then there was Baronstown the famous feasting ground of the Harpists which came within an inch of being declared a National Monument ,only the NRA sent workers in at 4am under cover of the night to destroy the site before it could be recognised. What about Roestown? Finest examples of sousterrains. Thats just a few examples of what was discovered and then destroyed. Yes much was learnt but at what price?

author by Tara Tara Tarapublication date Fri Jun 04, 2010 07:39author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The ceremony will take place today at the Athboy Roundabout just outside Navan at 11am. Please join us for a peaceful banner protest. Bring cameras and the usual survival kit :) See ye there.

author by Tara Tara Tara - Tara Skryne Preservation Grouppublication date Fri Jun 04, 2010 20:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Sorry to disappoint you Driver but we were indeed there. A group of about 20 of us were stationed at the Athboy Roundabout where the slip road onto the M3 was substantially guarded by Security and Gardaí making sure we didnt get anywhere near the invite only ceremony. Overhead a garda helicopter circled Rath Lugh and the Hill. We heard the ceremony went on for 2 hours full of the expected back slaps, handshakes and congratulatory speeches lauding Dempsey and his vanity project, the great M3 Motorway ... Over outside the Ardboyne Hotel another group of 10 protesters held a banner presence and between the two groups we were interviewed by the Irish Times, Irish Independent, Irish Examiner, Meath Post, Meath Chronicle and RTE. After that we soujourned to the Hill where a Tara spokesperson was interviewed by TV3 and another protest was held. From there we dispersed to Collierstown, Rath Lugh and Lismullin Bridge where some still remain.

My camera went on the blink for most of the day, how unfortunate but maybe someone else will post some pics from the Ardboyne and Athboy- especially the Grim Reaper please! :) I look forward to seeing those. Meanwhile later on I managed to get it working again and here are just a few pics of an historic day in the Tara Skryne Valley.

Bless each and every heart that stood to defend her for so many years.

I wonder how long it will take for the back slaps to change their impetus when the tax payer gets the bill. When Dempsey goes to bed tonight you can bet that will be on his mind. The rosy tinted glasses will fall off and some sort of poetic justice will be done for what they have done to the Valley. No rest for the wicked as they say...

Hill of Tara Car Park
Hill of Tara Car Park


Rath Lugh National Monument
Rath Lugh National Monument

Lismullin Bridge
Lismullin Bridge

Attempted ousting from Lismullin Bridge. Didnt get far :)
Attempted ousting from Lismullin Bridge. Didnt get far :)

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author by lazypublication date Sat Jun 05, 2010 07:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A young and silly lady got RTE media time last night to say that
the NRA sponsorship of archaelology had increased knowledge.


They take grads (just out of college) and give them short contracts
and minimum wage to dig up and bag bits of heritage. There is
no ethos, there is a massive back-up in data and the PS is
starved of decent archiving/data facilities.

But when you are young and stupid you will believe the corporate
fantasies and bad-bank relationships of your company, then maybe
rue the day some idiot asked you to soundbyte for RTE in order
to rationalise FF corruption.

(I am awaiting the SIAC/Ferrovial bad bank connection so we can
all really see what Tara was about : cheap property/ massive toll
profit )

I don't suppose our colleges allow people to develop independent thought anymore-

author by Tara Tara Tarapublication date Sat Jun 05, 2010 09:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Photo Alan Betson Irish Times


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author by Ozymandias.publication date Sat Jun 05, 2010 16:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare.


author by Tara Tara Tarapublication date Sat Jun 05, 2010 18:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You forgot the last line:

"lone and level sands stretch far away."

Just like the vast and barren Motorway.

Ozymandias ruler of nothing -just like Dempsey.

Yesterday protesters were warned to leave Lismullin Bridge by M3 workers and were threatened with Gardaí but refused to leave. JP Fay reminded them that we had the man power in the Valley to blockade the road and stop traffic. We didnt interfere with their opening ceremony, it was allowed to proceed with dignity. He told them we wanted the same thing, to be allowed our own protest without the hassle, now fluck off. Which they did after reporting to the boss man by phone :)

author by lazypublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 11:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I do wonder if Siac/Ferrovial and the NRA have links to the bad banks?

I do wonder if their FF cronies are holding the land until they stimulate
the bad banks enough to attempt to put up their tasteless monstrosities all over Tara motorway ?

I do wonder if the Green party will be accepting Green industry donations to prettify their coalition partner's destruction ?

+ of course always I wonder why the Greens did nothing about the
SIB and the Aarhus Convention when they went into power with
the planning party. urban sprawl and cheap housing AIN't Green.

But I am reliably informed that the GP founders are the bast'ard child of FF curmudgeons anyway.

author by Morriganpublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 11:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

There was a well written piece in yesterdays Irish Independent by Lisa Hand. The following extract amused me greatly :)

"There was a heavy garda presence on the tucked-away stretch of motorway a few kilometres outside Navan; a garda helicopter hovered overhead and there were uniformed bizzies on all nearby roundabouts, ramps and even on the overpass bridges, for fear that some crazed conservationists would suddenly absail into Noel's party like Israeli commandos."

The politicians were nervous alright. It must have cost a fortune to put on that show. Well done the protesters for giving them a run for their money :)

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author by non-driverpublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 11:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The motorway is now up and running. Traffic flows freely in both directions. Can protesting groups now draw up an audit of the damage done and the potential future damage? Is there any way that ecology and heritage groups can from this point on influence public opinion and the authorities in order to protect heritage sites adjacent to the route? What kind of damage limitation could be achieved? Can sites of archaeological and scenic interest be made accessible to specialists and interested members of the public?

author by lazypublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 12:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Planning Party and the beautifiers are totally dishonest about the series of
legislations that Fianna Fáil introduced into this country in order to reap a fiscal benefit.

it has now been re-invested into ghost estates and the pockets of cronies.

They have divested the public services and rundown the statutory machinery to achieve this profit.

Whilst a series of aggressive developer led legislations have been introduced
and criticised across the EU, along with their attendant fines and breaches of directives.
The Green party have sat on their arses pushing bits of paper about their desks and
telling anyone who'd listen (the craven media) that "Their hands are tied".

** Ask Gormley why he has not prioritised the Aarhus Convention?

***Ask Gormley why he has not instituted changes to the courts under
the 2006 SIB (he knows he cannot BTW).

****Ask Gormley why he went into power with FF , fully cognisant that
Planning laws were developer geared and that the PPP reduces
rights of people to protest.

*****Ask FF/Green why the media ignores the fining of FF/PD/Green
under breach of directive ?

The only question worth asking Roche is why he never
introduced a separate sheaf of planning laws concerned
in providing statutory protection agencies and Heritage protections ?

Marriage a La Mode : The JC party is as blatant as FF.

author by opus diablos - the regressive hypocrite partypublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 12:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

While you are interrogating Mr G,could you ever ask why the silence on Shannon collaboration with the petroleum resource wars(which includes the ongoing renditions programs for interrogation in the Globocorp gulag archipelago); the volte face on the Shellmullet Great Gas festival(even as BP show us ,once again,the consequences of letting Big Oil write their own planning and safety laws).Oh and why all the fuss about making me change my light bulb for one that will leave mercury scattered like depleted uranium at a Bush party even as they subsidise a scrappage scheme for the SUVs as peak oil gallops over the hill like a lancer egg dull amok?But dont ask about Pat O'Donnell,we'll save that ceist for Lulu Ahern in the Ministry for Justifications.Or is that more blasphemy?

author by lazypublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 20:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You will find as time moves on a bit that the Green Party are up to their neck in it, under the capable
and enduring leadership of Gormley.

He cannot ignore and obfuscate on Tara, On the DDAA, on the Poolbeg Incinerator,
On Rossport and ON Cork forever.

He won't be able to hide the fines, the breaches and the statutes his
senior coalition party introduced to make money for their buddies.

He knows all this and his buying of time has left him bereft of leaders, of grassroots and of local organisors.

Nothing the party will say or do will put a positive complexion on the depth of corruption
tied up in FF planning and legislation BUT sure he got a few electric terminals and lightbulbs : Bless!

The Green Party have destroyed their own integrity. He'll *have* to pay people to canvass for him cos mostly they ignore him in DSE.

author by IshtarCeltpublication date Sun Jun 06, 2010 20:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

AS one of the Pixies who tried to go to the launch, I would like to point out that it was invite only, and the hoi-polloi in general were not allowed within 2km of the launch!
some of us were threatened with arrest for walking along the hard shoulder!

Dempsey and the Gardai had the event well locked down

author by lazypublication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 09:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Only right I suppose, given that Dempsey and Cullen did most of the
Transport and planning legislation in those years.

Sure we can put Rossport down to Noel Dempsey TD, John Gormley TD's pal in Cabinet.

author by Carbon Emitter.publication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The motorway network is a vital component of the upgrading of Ireland's backward infrastructure.
It has nothing to do with political corruption.
For the first time we have a decent road between the two largest cities in the republic;Dublin and Cork.

There is still a gaping hole in the infrastructure.

For much of its route the road from Cork to Limerick is still a narrow winding country lane.
Tough luck if you come up behind a JCB.You might be crawling for several miles before you get a chance to overtake.
These are the 2nd and 3rd largest cities in the Republic.

(They don't even have a direct railway link,you have to change at "Limerick Junction" which is in Tipperary, two miles from Tipperary town.)

A dual carriageway/motorway is badly needed here.

Roll on the Bulldozers!

author by opus diablos - the regressive hypocrite partypublication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 16:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Emissions.I would agree with what you say about infrastructural deficits.But would the same amount of capital invested in rapid rail services for heavy goods and intercity commuters not have given a better long-term return for a lower carbon blowback problem.Or do you get your science from Genesis?A little imagination and one way networks could be developed on our secondary networks to make them more efficient and accessable to those who dont need the ego-boost of a long bonnet to compensate for their inadequacies or protect them from contact with us rabble on public transport.Plus,tourism being a major earner for many people,are we not shooting another laying goose with the homogenising of the country so you might as well be on an autobahn as head here for a change.Oh,and is peak oil,the military consequences of the dependency on this comodity,all the damage from the Niger to the BP Gulf mess just someone elses problem?

author by Nuke.publication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 18:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Very easy to put electric trams on either side of the motorways in the future.

Powered by Solar and Nuclear energy.

No sweat.

author by opus diablos - the regressive hypocrite partypublication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 18:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

fair comment.But how many billion did the NRA motorway thats going to be looking in the supersonic window at you cost; that might have been better spent taking the longer view in the first place?I may be wrong,I haven't given the details a lot of scrutiny,but every aspect of transport policy on the island points to maximising of oil product consumption at every option.Rather than considering the strategic interests of the population in relation to finite resource optimal value.Our Res Publica nodded.Or did it get nudged by a wad?

author by Sceptic. - Not Fianna Fail publication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 19:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I suppose you do have a valid point opus , sure look at ''the trouble'' Shell are going thru to ensure we get our fair supply of gasoline , wheels must keep rolling thats for sure .

author by Nuke.publication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 20:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The NRA motorways are forever.

They will last thousands of years.

They are the best long term investments ever made in Ireland, in my opinion.

author by lazypublication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 20:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The cheap urban-sprawl housing that Fianna Fáil has so minted it from.

lest we forget : just look at Adamstown.

Jolly good Mssrs Cullen, Dempsey, Roche and Gormley, ye done good with the legislation.

Lawlor will be raising a glass for ye lot in hell these days


author by Clare Person.publication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 20:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Lest we forget : just look at Adamstown"

Adamstown is ugly corrupt Dublin.

The very name was dreamed up by a developer.

Not Ireland though.

author by opus diablos - the regressive hypocrite partypublication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 22:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

pity the oil wont.Or the Gulf of Mexico if BP keep running the program.if we dont snap out of our speed transfiction(sic)the motorways will just be corridors of ragweed.And the ragweed wil outlast your conctrete certitudes.Look it up.Even Tom Moore will outlast your melodious exhaust fuming.

author by Cynic.publication date Mon Jun 07, 2010 23:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"And the ragweed wil outlast your conctrete certitudes.Look it up."

That is for sure Opus.

We can always re-name "Adamstown" back to the local Gaelic name in the future.

When we grow up.

author by thegreenspirit - Privatepublication date Tue Jun 08, 2010 13:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We are facing a changing climate, collapsing bio diversity and the turning of a once green and pleasant land into a litter strewn, low cost suburbia.
We are broke, unemployed and in many ways unemployable; our wages are too high they say. Our children will not have the education they need, our old will die on trolley’s, and our teenagers will fester for years on the dole; but we build roads.
That’s what they did over the last fifteen years, that’s where our money went, that’s the template that is still being promoted. On this thread too.
If we continue we are told that in the end this will attract jobs, make life easier and in the end provide us with a quality of life…we were told that fifteen years ago too.
It beggars belief that people can still hold to and believe in all that which has just wrecked us.

author by lazypublication date Tue Jun 08, 2010 13:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I agree with Greenspirit. FF/Green/Pd have dedicated themselves to nothing for the 13 years of *power* they have enjoyed.


author by opus diablos - the regressive hypocrite partypublication date Tue Jun 08, 2010 14:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors order to facilitate the deployment of the imperial legions.Helicopter gunships over Bellmullet would not be touristically photogenic.We are not Nigeria(yet) so they find it awkward to hang Pat O'Donnell.Fortunately,Pat Kenny has enough in his portifolio to ensure he wont rock any corporate boats,so we might just get to Ogoni conditions.We already seem to have the political 'infrastucture'.

author by TaraTaraTarapublication date Wed Jun 09, 2010 09:24author address author phone Report this post to the editors

M3 Opening Day

Cop blockade
Cop blockade

Athboy Roundabout
Athboy Roundabout

TV Documentary Interviews
TV Documentary Interviews

Athboy Bridge
Athboy Bridge

Interviews Lismullin Bridge
Interviews Lismullin Bridge

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author by Anonpublication date Mon Jun 14, 2010 13:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

At the official opening of the M3 motorway by the NRA and Minister Noel Dempsey on 4 June 2010, the Spanish flag was nearly three times the size of the Irish. Minister Dempsey even cracked a joke about it.

Now we know who calls the shots re road policy in Ireland. 75% of the tolls raised wont be staying here, Viva Espania!


author by Technologist.publication date Mon Jun 14, 2010 14:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"We are broke, unemployed and in many ways unemployable; our wages are too high they say. Our children will not have the education they need, our old will die on trolley’s, and our teenagers will fester for years on the dole; but we build roads."

Roads made the Roman Empire.
And many an empire before.

Roman Roads were ultra fast and dead straight communication links which kept the pesky Gremanics and Celts and Slavs and Assyrians etc. in their place.

Roads are the very veins of civilisation.

Fibre Optic cables with virtually infinite bandwidth have been laid down with the motorways.

Fibre Optics are the new Roman Roads.

author by Peggypublication date Mon Jun 14, 2010 16:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

What fibre optics do you mean? I hadnt heard of any of that. Pity they didnt put the power cables down with it and lay the rail at the same time. Wouldnt that have been genius!

author by Engineer.publication date Mon Jun 14, 2010 17:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You can easily put rails alongside,or on, a motorway Peggy.

So when cars are banned the motorways will be useful.

Fibre (Americans spell it fiber) optic cables have millions to billions of times more bandwidth than mere copper cables.

The newest fibre optic cables have virtually infinite bandwidth.
They transmit everything from sound wave frequencies to almost gamma ray frequencies for thousands of miles.

With little attenuation.

author by lazypublication date Mon Jun 14, 2010 20:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Greens act as a clearing house for the fundamentally flawed and profit-driven planning
Of Fianna Fáil, who do (it must be admitted) seem to like their legislations to reflect their
current cronies interests!!

SO is Minister Gormley gonna enact the SIB 2006 ? which will see the court system
re-structure to facilitate the cronies and bad banks.... "in for a penny, in for a pound,
Minister Gormley.. like build an economy of failed law, failed banks and eco disaster.

The Greens have done NOTHING about their electoral promise to transpose Aarhus
and only a teensy section of it is actually transposed VIA the SIB !!! Thats cos power
and it's obvious juicy type of attractions have totally blinded the Greens to their roles
as protectors and stewards of OUR environment.

Olé Gormley, you'll never get a decent vote in DSE again, looks like a Creighton will
supersede you .. and quite a few lefties :-)

author by Tara Tara Tarapublication date Fri Jun 18, 2010 15:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Technologist, Scientist, Archaeologist-albeit Amateur, Engineer, I would love to know where ye got your qualifications from.

There are no Fibre Optics laid down with the M3. I doubt there is any with other NRA roads either but if you have proof feel free to enlighten me. I was wondering how long it would take someone to correct you. I see it is left to me once more to do the honours.

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author by JP Fay - Chairde Gaelpublication date Fri Jun 18, 2010 16:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It isnt possible to put the rail on the road now as it stands because it would have to run over a gradient of 1-4 and the bridges are all in the wrong places. The Govt. should have put the Road and Rail in together in the first place and it would have come in at quarter of the cost.

A Chairde Gael made the suggestion to the Govt and to Meath Co Co at the time when it was still actually possible to do so, to put the Road and Rail down on the old Dublin to Navan rail route but our Plans were ignored.

Now we have a right Royal mess in the Royal County created by two Political parties that seem to be members of the one football team.

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author by Engineer.publication date Fri Jun 18, 2010 16:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"There are no Fibre Optics laid down with the M3."

There is a copper infrastructure already laid down alongside the motorways.

While is true that fibre has not yet been laid, if you look alongside every motorway you can see that provision has already been made.

Note the emergency telephones (and sundry signals of all kinds) every half a mile or so along every road deemed worthy of the name "Motorway."

Fibre optics are thinner than the copper cables connecting the telephone sets and signal devices etc.
And easier to install.

And even a thin fibre optic cable is fast enough to transmit the information in several Encyclopedia Brittannicas along the motorway from Dublin to Cork in a fraction of a second.

author by Morriganpublication date Fri Jun 18, 2010 17:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Its not the motorways that are wired up Engineer it is yourself. Post accurate and relevant information or none at all.

author by Engineer.publication date Fri Jun 18, 2010 17:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The "Information Superhighway" is NAMED after ROADS Morrigan.

Not fatuous here-today-gone-tomorrow political "ideas".


author by Carmel Divineypublication date Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Why are all the photographs removed?

author by W. Finnertypublication date Mon Apr 09, 2012 20:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Reply to Carmel Diviney at Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:22:

I don't know why the photographs have been removed from some (perhaps all?) "Tara" threads, but backup copies can be found at places such as:

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