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Stop Wasting Public Money on Wanton Destruction of the Tara-Skryne Valley
'The Minister of Environment has shown that he is no such thing. We have no Minister for Heritage.'
''Further photographs taken Saturday July 16th show more caterpillar marks on the 15 foot high topsoil grinding down any possible finds that might emerge. The large digger on site has been replaced by a much smaller one but the marks of the caterpillar wheels clearly show that they were caused by a much larger machine. The test trenching report stated that there was an expected “19 century (?) house” on this site and this is carefully marked out on site. But this is not to say that other materials are not hidden in the topsoil of what is recognised as one of the richest archaeological landscapes in Europe.
Most archaeologists agree that 50%-80% of artefacts are found in the topsoil. If another Derry na Flann chalice or a Tara brooch appears there is not much hope of finding it crushed beneath one of these monster machines.
The Minister of Environment has shown that he is no such thing. We have no Minister for Heritage. The Ministry that M.D Higgins so carefully built up has been destroyed, Dúchas is dismantled and the NRA is given responsibility for archaeology. The same NRA along with Meath County Council are completely insensitive to the concerns of the local people over the methodology employed here. Where is the Research Documentation that should accompany such a dig?
Public money is being wasted on this unnecessary excavation. This is not proper research archaeology. This is wanton destruction and vandalism of our most important archaeological, literary, historical and sacred landscape and it must be stopped now.''
'The photographs printed and others that have been taken since bear witness to the fact that no care is being taken of the topsoil that is being lifted by diggers and then has caterpillar wheel marks all over it. One photo shows a bone lying carelessly on the ground.'
The Save the TaraSkryne Valley Group is horrified at the recent commencement of so-called “archaeological” digging at Philpotstown/Blundelstown at the foot of Tara’s hill. Recent photographs in the newspapers show that the top of the Hill is clearly visible from this area. This directly contradicts the Taoiseach’s opinion that he could not see the Hill from the route of the proposed M3. These photographs clearly show that the top of the hill is only some fields away from the location of the proposed interchange. The coffee shop and church are clearly visible.