Moore Street Rising centre is still a ‘top priority’

Josepha Madigan responds as Court of Appeal overturns ‘national monument’ ruling

 File photograph of  Moore Street in Dublin. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

File photograph of Moore Street in Dublin. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

 

Opening the final headquarters of the 1916 Rising leaders to the public remains a “top priority”, Minister for Heritage Josepha Madigan has said.

In a statement after the Court of Appeal overturned on Wednesday an earlier ruling that various buildings on and around Moore Street were a national monument, Ms Madigan, whose department had brought an appeal against the ruling, said officials would consider the implications.

“This was an extremely complex and wide-reaching case and I will study the judgment in detail with my officials to see what the full effect of it is,” she said.

“The preservation of the State-owned national monument building at 14-17 Moore Street . . . and opening them to the public remains the top priority and will obviously be the major influence over our thinking.”

The Government had argued it was only necessary to protect 14-17 Moore Street, where it is intended to establish a 1916 Rising Commemorative Centre.

James Connolly Heron, a relative of executed 1916 leader James Connolly, said the court’s decision did not alter the relatives’ determination to have the sites preserved.

The 1916 Relatives Association said “positive and constructive dialogue” is the next step, and it expressed hope the State and all parties involved could find “a common solution that can meet the needs and concerns” of all involved.

In 2010, Chartered Land secured planning to develop a site stretching from the former Carlton Cinema on O’Connell Street to Moore Street.

The plans included retail units, apartments, office space and restaurants in a complex up to six storeys high.

Last year UK property group Hammerson secured ownership of a number of Chartered Land assets, including the Carlton site.

‘Engage constructively’

In a statement, Hammerson said their engagement on the plans had been “unavoidably constrained” by the legal proceedings but “the judgment now enables us to engage constructively and we are looking forward to working with stakeholders in the coming weeks”.

The 1916 Relatives Association said it had been invited to talks with Hammerson, from which they hope they will find out what the property company plans to do.

Lord Mayor of Dublin Mícheál Mac Donncha said “the people of Dublin and the people of Ireland. want to see the Moore Street battle site preserved”.

Green Party councillor Ciarán Cuffe said the party’s members “will work with our city council colleagues to place 10 Moore Street and other buildings on the list of protected structures, and to bring forward a Local Area Plan for the area that will give greater protection to our history and heritage”.