Arts Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Dáil Issues, Oral Questions

To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht further to Parliamentary Question No. 22 of 22 October 2014 if she will provide Dail Éireann with an update on whether contact has been made between her Department, and Fingal County Council and the landowners of Drumanagh Promontory, with a view to securing this protected monument in public ownership.
– Clare Daly.

For ORAL answer on Tuesday, 9th December, 2014.

Ref No: 46776/14 Lottery: 17
R E P L Y
Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Heather Humphreys TD):

The promontory fort at Drumanagh, Lusk, Co. Dublin, is privately owned and there are no proposals to take it into State ownership.

The site is, however, subject to a Preservation Order under section 8 of the National Monuments Act 1930, as amended. The effect of the Preservation Order is that any works affecting the site require my consent, as Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, under section 14 of the Act. In that context, consent was recently given to the landowner for the replacement of the perimeter fence to facilitate agricultural activity and to protect the site from alleged incidences of anti-social behaviour. The monument is regularly inspected by my Department’s National Monuments Service.

The offer to provide advice or guidance to the landowners or to Fingal County Council on any matter relating to the protection of the national monument, as referred to by the Deputy, was made in the context of my Department’s understanding of contacts between the parties with regard to public access to the site. My Department has not received any communication from either party in the meantime.

I am generally supportive of all initiatives that may help to facilitate greater public access to our archaeological heritage. My Department’s National Monuments Service continues to be available to discuss any archaeological protection issues that might arise in that context with regard to this particular monument.

 

To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht her plans to improve the monitoring of coursing meetings by NPWS officers, in view of the fall in the numbers of such inspections and the lack of sufficient scrutiny of same.; and if she will make a statement on the matter.
– Clare Daly.

For ORAL answer on Tuesday, 9th December, 2014.

Ref No: 46777/14 Lottery: 13
R E P L Y
Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Ms. Heather Humphreys, T.D.)

Licences were issued by my Department in August 2014 under the Wildlife Acts to the Irish Coursing Club on behalf of their affiliated clubs to facilitate the tagging and capturing of hares for the purpose of hare coursing for the 2014/15 coursing season.
Regional management staff of the National Parks and Wildlife Service of my Department, who have a wide range of functions in protecting and conserving wildlife under both Irish and EU legislation, monitor compliance with the conditions of the annual licences issued to the Irish Coursing Club, as resources allow. During the 2013/14 coursing season some 37% of meetings were monitored by officials from my Department. I am not in a position, at this stage, to indicate how many of the coursing meetings will be monitored during the current season, however, such monitoring will continue into 2014/15.

I should also point out that veterinary staff from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine carry out some monitoring inspections during the coursing season to verify compliance with the rules governing animal welfare.