Protecting our heritage


Sir, – Vincent Salafia’s article and warnings on our heritage and its abuse was urgently needed (“National monuments must be protected by clear laws”, October 27th).

In September I visited the Tara Skryne Valley with friends.

We visited a souterrain; a legally-protected, numbered monument but one without a sign, fence or markings; and one where it appears a farmer has been driving his tractor over. Soon, we assume, it will crumble.

Across the fields from this, one can see the mounds neighbouring Rath Lugh and although mentioned in the medieval Metrical Dindshenchas one of them is or has been used as a gravel pit. Nearby at Collierstown, a fulacht fiadh was bulldozed this year, while at Tara itself, Rath Laoghaire is used each winter as a sheep-feeding station and here too a tractor appears to have been casually driven across a protected monument.

I could go on and on! Politicians including Taoiseach Enda Kenny, the National Monuments Service, An Taisce and the local authorities are regularly notified by us about this but nothing is done.

Visiting the once sacred remnants of our past one sees only signs of abuse and destruction.

– Yours, etc,



Dublin 9.