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 Post subject: Save the Hill of Tara!
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:23 am 
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I'm on a e-bulletin board for the Glastonbury Community. Here is an email I received that may be of interest to those on this board. If this isn't appropriate here, please let me know. Feel free to pass it on to other interested parties

"The Hill of Tara archaeological complex, Ireland's premier national
monument and most sacred landscape, is under dire threat from imminent bisection by construction of the M3 motorway.

The Irish government is tearing up its number one national monument.
They're not actually passing over the Hill of Tara itself but planning to build a huge motorway interchange within a few hundred metres of it. At least 48 significant archaeological sites, including some of national significance, are being destroyed in the process of building a
sodding motorway!

I'd like to alert potentially interested people to the TaraWatch.org
petition, so they can register their objections against this proposed route of the M3 motorway near the Hill of Tara in Ireland. More info is available at www.tarawatch.org, and the petition can be signed at
http://www.petitiononline.com/taram3/petition.html.

It takes next to no time to sign the petition. Hoping that Glastonbury
will supply a good number of signatures."

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 Post subject: TARA - updated petition/information link.
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:30 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2007 11:39 am
Posts: 148
Location: Harbledown nr Canterbury
Hi Mary
Thanks for drawing this to our attention. The following blog is exhaustive in its coverage of this issue: http://www.hilloftara.blogspot.com/
This now seems to be the main website for the campaign.

People can also sign the petition you mentioned from there, join the Tarawatch mailing list, and watch/listen to numerous clips of RTE and other coverage. The blog is an education in itself as it goes into every imaginable aspect of this issue.

There was a BBC programme on the threat to ancient sites in the present rush to develop every corner of Ireland at some point in the last couple of years. I have been very busy and not always as attentive as I ought, and so my memory fails me - it could have been on Radio 4 or equally on TV - I am not able to swear that the sounds and images in my brain go together in this case. I will try to find relevant links and post them here. There are two links to BBC reports on the above blog in fact.

I will now take off my MWI Forum Moderator and Archival Officer hats and speak my own mind. On my part I agree that Ireland deserves to be as developed as the rest of western Europe and am delighted to see how her people are currently benefitting from this. However, I feel strongly that the rich ancient heritage of that country and its people should not be sacrificed in this process as places like Tara are in their own special and significant way part of this process of restoration to past greatness. Also, I think that it is essential that such sites should be preserved for scholarly and scientific purposes.

Tara is also of Christian and non-Christian religious significance, like many Irish sites now under threat and so it would be crassly insensitive to endanger it with development.

In my opinion, and to conclude, Ireland is not the pastoral idyll or mist-softened otherworld of a hundred thousand stereotypes, and never was, and so modernisation there is in many ways right and proper, BUT, it must be done responsibly and it is good to do our bit to ensure that this happens. All too often, Irish government policy mirrors that of the UK and so the same mistakes are replicated.

Kind regards,
Heliodorus.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:54 pm 
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I have been following this through a few different avenues. It is just amazing cant even articulate my bewilderment and frustration over this and the destruction of the Baronstown enclosure [re.Britarch].


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2007 12:37 pm 
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I was interested to see Geoge Eogan has, unsurprisingly, waded in on this debate [Letter to the Editor, Sunday Independent, 13 May 2007]. Surely Francis cant be far behind.

a full transcript can be read here: http://tarawatch.org/?page_id=351


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 Post subject: Save the Hill of Tara
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 8:42 pm 
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In response to your last post, Rik, GOOD - the more heavyweights involved in this the better.

Today I was interviewed by Yvonne Murray of BBC news for a feature on this coming Sunday's Broadcasting House programme on Radio 4 (starts at 0900 since you asked :lol: :lol: ). The subject of Tara came up (tangentially) and Yvonne told me that she is planning to do a story on the issue soon. She mentioned that there was at present a moratorium on the proposed construction and therefore some cause for hope.

Of course if I am soon to be a celeb I'll have to start billing Rik for these posts. And yes that was entirely shameless bragging. :twisted:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 11:42 pm 
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Helio, while your living the champagne lifestyle with the british media, see if you cant name drop the NWI ;)


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 Post subject: Save the Hill of Tara
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2007 9:24 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2007 11:39 am
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Location: Harbledown nr Canterbury
Rik - Interview recorded yesterday and NWI duly plugged several times.

However, I can't promise that they won't edit these out.

The interview was for a piece about different experiences of social networking sites and I had to describe my Facebook profile to the journalist - which happens to have numerous NWI logos and links and articles on wells and photos of them highly visible. So, in describing my profile I had to explain what NWI was all about and how I was promoting it to people on the London and Kent Uni Facebook networks. As Yvonne is interested in Tara on a personal level we can hope that her sympathies might lie in our direction.


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 Post subject: I heard some people got arrested ...
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2007 5:27 am 
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I heard on the Glastonbury bulletin board that a few people got arrested at the site of the road construction, and given the choice to go free with the proviso that they didn't protest or obstruct at the site anymore, they chose jail.

A lot of what's been said here on this thread goes over my head. Don't understand who is who politcally, etc. But what I want to know, is how can this even be considered? and what are the chances that it will actually go through?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2007 3:04 pm 
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From an archaeologists perspective this is a very very complex issue and requires proving the integrity of the landscape to be affected. We remember Duffy for example who says this is not the case and the various components of the Tara landscape are not related and so will be unaffected by development in the adjacent landscape. We also have to consider how such a reappraisal on archaeological grounds relates to increased expense of the overall project and if this is the best solution, and also if there is the political will to move the road. The landscape argument was the basis of the court battle last year over the proposed motorway construction in which it was argued that under the National Monuments Act 2004 the road was illegal, which was lost but which was under appeal. Many archaeologists take Duffy's position as a total nonsense, as do I. What is important I am afraid is that excavation along the proposed route of the motorway has ended or will end about now, and so I think the following road construction is very probable.


Last edited by rik_na1 on Tue Jul 24, 2007 9:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2007 9:12 pm 
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I should add one thing. There is a battle in archaeology between commercial archaeologists and non-commercial archaeologists. I am the latter. I am a materials specialist and I think that time and care should be taken over material retrieval and I always choose a trowel over a mattock and a spade over a mechanical digger. I like to think I also get better results as a consequence. However, most archaeology is commercial, like it or not. This means a contractor pays for archaeological work to be done. In the case of the Tara excavations, the data that will come from the excavation program will utterly change the face of our knowledge on the Tara complex, will and has discovered new and very very important [and I should add now destroyed in one key case] sites. People will jump on these results and build new theories, and I am not just talking about archaeologists but also interested amateurs etc. Yet without the funding from this program such work would not have been conducted. Now this brings me to my point. I was disappointed to see today that some save the Tara groups have been talking about alledged misconduct of the AU's working on the Tara excavations. Can I just make clear that commercial archaeology has to work hand in hand with developers and often, the project briefs will have archaeological work going on in one corner of a site whilst there is digging in another. Is it perfect no as I said above. Is it life? yes. You must ask yourself if it is fair to criticize AU's who at the best of times are up against a maelstrom of problems who have gained a fantastic set of data on Tara, because they have to dance with the twin devils of government and construction to achieve this. It is not fair to point at a digger and a nearby archaeologist and say he is not doing his job correctly. He probably is. I often work on sites that are going to run for a decade or more, a commercial archaeologist funded to study miles of site in one and a half years does not have the luxury of time I have. Well my tuppence worth.


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