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Call for immediate support at Tara - tree-felling under way

category meath | history and heritage | news report author Monday January 01, 2007 00:14author by Save Tara Campaign Report this post to the editors

The Save Tara Campaign is putting out a call for immediate assistance. Please come to the Tara Solidarity Vigil tomorrow morning, January 1st 2007. Illegal tree-felling is under way in the Tara/Skryne Valley, and concerned citizens are needed to assist with daily demonstrations, beginning early-morning. Please call 086-175-8557 or 087-132-3365

We had difficulty uploading images so please see http://www.tarawatch.org for images

The following images were taken December 31st, 2006. They show the pathway for the M3 motorway having been cleared through part of the Tara / Skryne Valley, at Rath Lugh, a national monument. Other wooded areas are still intact, but it is feared works will resume tomorrow, New Years Day. Peaceful demonstrations at the sites will occur daily, beginning Monday morning.

If you want to assist, please visit the Tara Solidarity Vigil, which is located on the north of the Hill of Tara, past Rath Grainne. Just follow the ditch/ road north, from the parking area, and they are located in the corner. Rope and tarpolin are needed. Call 086-175-8557

For a full archive of recent images or tree-cutting and archaeological digs please see http://www.tarawatch.org

Save Tara Campaign is a network consisting of
Save Tara Skryne Valley group, - http://www.savetaravalley.com
Tara Solidarity Vigil and - http://www.tarasolidarityvigil.net
TaraWatch http://www.tarawatch.org

Related Link: http://www.tarawatch.org
author by Chroniclerpublication date Mon Jan 01, 2007 13:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors


The enclosure at Rath Lugh is not part of the proposed M3 Motorway route, it does
however provide (or did) an excellent sheltered area near the route wherein a
solidarity camp could have watched the proceedings and be near enough to
launch protests from it.

Given the tetchiness of the State and the cronies who wish to cash in on the
lands freed for re-zoning and development along the route, it can only be assumed
that the tree-felling at that site could be to prevent it's use as a camp. This
would be to ensure that the authorities have greater visibility to ensure that the
road is delivered on time and within budget.

Given that FF/PD are promulgating an Easter election , it seems that the starting
of the road will not be delayed to 'account for snails and archaelogy' (Bertie Ahern)
but to ensure that the flustered ex-dublin sprawler gets a 'better quality of life'
in the transport system. In other words, the road will proceed very quickly and
whomever is responsible for pushing it through will not allow for mistakes:
such as a group of protestors using the Rath Lugh Canopy for launching protests.

author by Save Tara Campaignpublication date Mon Jan 01, 2007 14:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Please come to the Hill of Tara tonight for an emergency meeting. You can get a 109 bus from busaras.

Rath Lugh is directly impacted by the M3, and this is clearly visible from images at http://www.tarawatch.org

The base of Rath Lugh, having been denuded
The base of Rath Lugh, having been denuded

author by Chroniclerpublication date Tue Jan 02, 2007 21:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Rath Lugh is not under threat, it is not in the Pathway of the proposed M3 route.
on the Tarawatchwatch website (provided at link in the above comment) it very
clearly states that the Rath will 'overlook' the motorway and will be a 100 metres from the
motorway.

People do not respond to propaganda and hysteria.

The tree-felling was accomplished in order that the natural fort and canopy which
it provided was a potential protest site. given the rather jaundiced approach of
the DOE to protections of 'existent ' monuments they probably felt that the site
'would be harmed' by occupation.

The sites under threat are the 38 sites along the actual route and two of them
are national monuments. it is of no use to be hysterical, report the facts.

author by eyewitnesspublication date Wed Jan 03, 2007 00:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

TaraWatch has published information and pictures of many sites under threat, including:

Baronstown, National Monument under threat
http://tarawatch.org/?p=289

Collierstown National Monument under threat
http://tarawatch.org/?p=273

Roestown National Monument under threat
http://tarawatch.org/?p=304

Rath Lugh National Monument under threat
http://tarawatch.org/?p=234

Rath Lugh is a national monument. It is a defensive hillfort to Tara, like Ringlestown Rath (also now ruined by treeplanting) Rathmiles, etc. But its importance and extent have been downplayed by 'all' the authorities in this sad case. Here are two quotes from 'The Impact of the Proposed M3 Motorway on Tara and its Cultural Landscape by Edel Bhreathnach, Conor Newman, Joseph Fenwick:
http://www.nuigalway.ie/archaeology/Tara_Skryne_documen....html

“Later prehistory heralded an extension and increased regulation of the ceremonial landscape of Tara, a phenomenon that in many ways prefaced the creation of the ferann ríg, or royal demesne of Tara. Defensive earthworks were built around Tara.. These can be traced extending eastwards towards Duleek and northwards as far as the Boyne. Rosnaree, across-river from Knowth, is a royal settlement of the kings of Tara, while to the south-east of it is the former location of the Painestown ogam stone, a monument possibly commemorating one of the Leinster kings of Tara. The Hill of Tara itself is more closely encircled by a group of strategically-positioned hillforts and an enormous linear earthwork, the configuration of which creates an inner zone of demarcation and defence, leaving no doubt about the traditional and continued importance of this area around the Birth of Christ and into the first few centuries AD.

“To the immediate east of Tara this territorial line is defined by the promontory forts of Rath Lugh and Edoxtown, near Skryne and Rathfeigh respectively. The proposed motorway ignores and transgresses this line and will, therefore, destroy the spatial and visual integrity of the archaeological and historical landscape of Tara, as well as removing from it key component monuments. Moreover, commanding a high promontory overlooking Lismullin, Rath Lugh was probably designed to control, inter alia, access through the valley between Tara and Skryne, for this is the principal entrance into this landscape from the north. If this development goes ahead, Rath Lugh will merely overlook, from a distance of 100m, a motorway, which would be a rather ignominious end for a once proud and important monument.

The images of Rath Lugh taken now show that the road appears to shave about 100-200 metres off part of the base of Rath Lugh, rather than run 100 metres away from it.

A comparison can be made with Mooghaun hillfort, which has also been ruined by Coillte planting of trees on it. Mooghaun hillfort (spelled Moghane in Irish), located in Co. Clare, is thought to be the largest hillfort in Ireland. Built just after 1260-930 B.C., it is situated “on a low hillock in a fairly gently undulating landscape of good agricultural land dotted with many small lakes” Grogan 1993: 39
http://www.nd.edu/~ikuijt/Ireland/Sites/sbergin/moogtex...t.htm

Barry Raftery said: “ These monuments are seen to be extensive areas of land within one or more ramparts of earth or stone, defending…rather than merely enclosing a hill-top or other strongly defensive natural position. The size, situation and magnitude of the defences of the hill-forts must denote centres of tribal rather than of family significance. In most cases the hill-fort may be regarded as having had, primarily, a defensive function…” , 1972, 39. Read more

The NRA, and even Discovery Programme archaeologists, would have you believe that the monument is 'on top' of the Rath; like, many would have you belive that the national monument of the Hill of Tara is only the 100 acres of public owned land on the top of Tara. The NUI Galway site even took aerial shots of the woods at Rath Lugh, and superimposed where they thought the 'monument' was, inside the woods. This is completely inaccurate if you actually go and view the site on the ground. The 'structure of the monument begins at the base of the hill. There are earthen banks and stone walls along the bottom of the hill. When you get to the top you see the double bank eathrworks. Then when you walk to the rear of the site you see that there is a massive linear earthwork all the way along the edge of the woods, facing the field on the east side. Looking at the image by the Discovery programme it appears that the monument is circular and does not go to the edge of the woods.

In other words, the entire woods contains the monument of Rath Lugh, all the way down to the flat field. So, to say that the M3 is 100 metres away from the rath is simply wrong. Not only that, but there is supposed to be an exclusion / protection zone around national monuments, which there is not in this case. Not only that, but take a look at the aerial shot before the works. You will see that there are other clearly visible remains all around the site, which are no doubt related.

Rath Lugh lies on Coillte lands (the Irish Forestry Board) , which means it is public owned. It is also under the remit of the OPW. Neither the OPW nor Coillte participated in the public process for the M3. The site has been completely mismanaged, both as a national monument and a national forest. Neither body has any public notice of its location, there is no public access, and there is no management plan for it. Further, there is no protection or exclusion zone around the monument. In other words, Coillte and OPW have failed in every respect, with regards to their own regulations, which state:

It is our policy to protect all known archaeological and cultural features on our estate, as are the requirements of the National Monuments Acts 1930 and 1994. In addition, as part of our commitment to Sustainable Forest Management we abide by the Forest Service Forestry and Archaeology Guidelines. These guidelines outline:
- how monuments should be protected in our forests;
- how exclusion zones should be created and maintained around monuments;
- how pedestrian access should be created to and from monuments;
- what do to if archaeological objects are found;
- what to do if new archaeological monuments are discovered; and
- procedures to be followed during afforestation, reforestation, harvesting, and road making in the vicinity of the monuments.

http://www.coillte.ie/managing_our_forests/forest_facts...h.htm

Somebody seems to ignored the fact that planting hundreds of trees on a monument essentially destroys much of its integrity in the first place. But where was the exclusion zone around Rath Lugh? Pedestrian entrance? Why didn’t Coillte /OPW participate in the An Bord Pleanala public process for the M3 and object to this intrusion? But why didn’t they put up a public notice of it’s existence? Why aren’t the Office of Public Works involved in managing the site? How is it that Coillte has only found 1371 monuments in all of their 1.5 million acre estate? Surely with miles and miles of flat land around the area, they could have picked a route that did not have to breach the integrity of this site. And what will happen to it if the motorway does go past? Do you think this is the end of development at this site?

Because Rath Lugh was dealt with in the Environmental Impact Statement, then it is not in the same legal category of the newly discovered sites like Baronstown and Collierstown, in the National Monuments Acts. But, regardless of the procedural history here, the simple fact is that Rath Lugh is a supremely important national monument that is now being wrecked.

Demonstrations by all sorts of concerned citizens against the construction works taking place BEFORE the Public Private Partnership contract have been awarded will continue in the morning, and every morning.

Rath Lugh, in the woods, before the recent works
Rath Lugh, in the woods, before the recent works

A severe underestimation of the extent of the monument
A severe underestimation of the extent of the monument

From Rath Lugh looking down
From Rath Lugh looking down

View from the north
View from the north

savetara_006.jpg

Related Link: http://www.tarawatch.org
author by Timerpublication date Wed Jan 03, 2007 06:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Save Tara campaign criticises felling of trees
Frank McDonald, Environment Editor

Irish Times
Wednesday, January 3, 2007

The Save Tara campaign is planning to protest against preparatory tree-felling along the route of the M3 motorway in Co Meath.

It said yesterday work is taking place at several sites on the route, including Rath Lugh, the site of a promontory fort in the Tara-Skryne valley, which is a national monument. Mature trees have been cleared from the bottom of Rath Lugh on the northern slope of the Hill of Skryne, opposite the Hill of Tara.

The Save Tara campaign said it feared that tree-felling work would resume today after the holidays.

A construction machinery depot has been set up south of Dunshaughlin, although a public-private partnership (PPP) contract for the motorway has not yet been signed. The site at Race Track Road is licensed to Siac-Ferrovial Agroman, which trades as the Eurolink consortium. It includes diggers, lorries and earth-moving equipment.

A site safety notice identifies the purpose of the depot as: "Construction work associated with the transfer of material from the M50 project Contract 1 to the M3 Area 10."

A spokesman for the National Roads Authority (NRA) confirmed the Dunshaughlin site had been set up on foot of a transfer agreement for materials from work on the M50.

He said these materials were being stockpiled on the site and would eventually be used for construction of the M3, for which the Eurolink consortium is the "preferred tenderer".

The NRA spokesman said the agency was aware "staging areas are being prepared" along the route of the M3, but this was preparatory work and did not form part of the main contract which was in the process of being finalised with Eurolink. The NRA expects construction will begin in April or May.

WRITE TO lettersed@irish-times.ie

author by Chroniclerpublication date Wed Jan 03, 2007 11:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Rath Lugh site is not under threat along the M3 route. There are 38 sites under threat
on the route including Baronstown1 and Collierstown.

These sites will be razed. Some of them are only partially excavated.

There is no other reason to cut the trees down than to ensure that the canopy does not provide
shelter to road protestors or for logistical reasons (ie the transport of equipment to the road
works).

In order to destroy or deface Rath Lugh Minister Roche would have to apply for
an order and yes it would be accomplished within 28 days sitting of the Oireachtas.

The OPW did not participate in the proces on the M3, as Duchas fulfilled that function
and objected to the route. Duchas was abolished and the role of Duchas provided
by the DOE and the OPW.

This campaign has singularly failed to contextualise the political and legislative forces
which have contributed to the Tara debacle. There has been little intelligent research
and investigative journalism. The key issues that have led to the choice of route
have been ignored and subsumed beneath the legal case which was badly researched
also . I note too that Dr Muireann ni Bhrolochain has run a list called Save Tara for a long
time, the name has been taken up by the combination of the three campaigns without
a by- your -leave.

The indymedia site has many stories on Coillte and Heritage, maybe the campaign
should begin by investigating the legislations which have led to this pass, instead
of screaming hysterical and untrue headlines and backing them up with images
from the Tarawatch website.

There will be trees removed.
There will be site destruction.
as I said yesterday report the facts not the suppositions.

btw: Barronstown1 and Collierstown are national monuments but they are not listed
as such by the state, therefore an order is not required for their destruction.

author by Eyewitnesspublication date Wed Jan 03, 2007 16:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Archaeological digs continue at Tara, but construction work hits a snag

Demonstrators took action this morning at Tara to voice their objection to the construction of M3 motorway, which two thirds of Irish people want rerouted from the Tara / Skryne Valley, according to a Red C Research survey. (See http://www.hilloftara.info/docs/SurveyResults.pdf )

They focused on tree-felling and earthmoving activities near Rath Lugh, which they claim to be illegal because the Public Private Partnership contract with the tolling/construction consortium has not been signed yet.

All these works have ceased, for the moment.

If you ever wanted to help save Tara, go there now.

Hats off to the concerned citizens, fighting on your behalf

Running in towards the machines working
Running in towards the machines working

There's a hole in the bucket
There's a hole in the bucket

Another action
Another action

Delicate archaeological tools on display
Delicate archaeological tools on display

More concerned citizens - going home early
More concerned citizens - going home early

author by Eyewitnesspublication date Wed Jan 03, 2007 16:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Motorway opponents protest against felling of Tara trees

10:28 Wednesday January 3rd 2007
http://www.unison.ie/breakingnews/index.php3?ca=9&si=103913

Opponents of the new M3 motorway in Co Meath have mounted a demonstration in the Tara-Skryne valley today to protest at the felling
of trees along the route of the proposed road.

The protestors are accusing the National Roads Authority of tearing down mature trees at several sites on the route, including the historic Rath Lugh area.

The National Roads Authority has defended the work, saying it is part of normal preparations for the motorway project.

The authority also says it is currently the best time of year to carry out the work without disturbing the local wildlife.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Move M3 from Tara valley

Meath Chronicle
Sat, Jan 06 07

(Editor, Meath Chronicle)

Dear sir - I am writing to express deep dissatisfaction at the planning of the new M3 motorway, and argue that it be moved out of the
Tara Skryne valley.

We have heard in the media about the court case taken by Vincent Salafia 'holding up' the motorway, when in fact, the project cannot go
ahead until the oral hearing on tolls, on 17th January next, in the Ardboyne Hotel, Navan.

The very fact that before this hearing, trees are already being demolished in places such as Ardsallagh and Rath Lugh, and in the case
of Rath Lugh, at strange times.

Rath Lugh is an ancient burial ground of what were the King of Tara's garrison; bones from these graves were found strewn about everywhere. These graves were destroyed before any sort of proper archaeological dig could happen.

The fact that, even before this hearing on the 17th January on the tolling system of the new motorway takes place, that the project
managers are already set on it being double tolled, which will cause an insurmountable cost to many who would use the road.

Soon after the Luas had been running for a short while, the government were shocked to learn that it turned in a profit; it was expected to
run at a loss for a good time. This only highlights how if proper public transport facilities are built, ie. a rail line for Meath, it
will be used to a huge extent, and new motorways wouldn't be needed in the first place.

Of course, it is now too late to stop the M3. We must demand that it be moved out of the Tara Skyrne valley, before we further desecrate
the cultural and historical heart of our country needlessly. A shorter route could be incorporated which will reduce distance to Dublin and
road building costs, and save Tara. Tara is not ours to damage. It belongs to all generations after us.

Yours,

PAT GALLAGHER
Rosnaree,
Beauparc,
Navan.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Reilly calls for work on route of M3 to cease

Sinn Fein Press Office
Published: 3 January, 2007

http://www.sinnfein.ie/news/detail/17254

Meath Sinn Féin Councillor Joe Reilly has called for work at the Rath Lugh site and other sites on the route of the M3 to cease until the
National Roads Authority (NRA) clarifies what exactly the workers are doing there. Councillor Reilly said that work has begun on the M3 which is illegal as the Public Private Partnership contract has not yet been signed.

He said, "Work is taking place at several sites along the route of the M3 including Rath Lugh which is the site of a promontory fort in the
Tara-Skryne Valley. Workers are refusing to tell campaigners what exactly they are doing or who they are working for and there are fears
that work has began on the M3 which would be illegal as the Public Private Partnership contract has yet to be signed. I am calling for the
work at these sites to cease immediately until the NRA clarifies exactly what work is taking place. The NRA has to ensure transparency
and openness in all its dealings with the public.

"Sinn Féin wants to work on the M3 begin as soon as possible however we are opposed to the routing of 3km of the 70km road through the Tara-Skryne Valley. It is these three kilometres that have plagued this project right from the very beginning. The case has been made time and again that there is an alternative route that can accommodate both infrastructure and heritage. This is a shorter route and would cost significantly less to build. This route should be used and I would propose that the Tara-Skryne Valley be developed as a sustainable tourist site."

ENDS

author by chroniclerpublication date Wed Jan 03, 2007 20:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

the group press-releasing as ' Save Tara 'were aware that Dr ni Bhrolochain has operated
a list by that name for some considerable time- the three campaigns, including the legal
campaign which have amalgamated have taken that name and therefore caused unwittingly,
or not, some confusion - particualry in the differences of approach to the campaign.

It seems inexcusable that the Tarawatch campaign which was originally a Salafia inititative
can go around absorbing other names and modes of protest when many in other areas
of research and activism quite simply are disassociated from it (for whatever reason).

The attempt at 'unity' for Tara makes no apology to the campaigners who have worked
hard for Tara using a variety of talents and gifts being subsumed into a further campaign
which is indeed led by Mr Salafia and deliberately causing confusion by failing to
respect the work of the original 'Save tara' group- the public record is not just a matter
of the established media, but of the conversations and memories of all those whom have
participated in the campaign. the failure of leadership through enforced amalgamation,
property rights theft and failure to recognise and utilise the talents of the contributors to the
Tara campaign is evident to all.

The media have been today asking the questions and they are being answered, as
to why these people are using the domain names of separate and distinct groups.

Therefore any releases from the newly minted 'Save Tara' group do not represent the views
of the original online list , who must now it seems change their name.
an agent provocateur could not fuck up a campaign as neatly in their drive for personal
recognition.

As to the tree-felling at Rath Lugh, it is an attempt to create a staging stop for the
proposed road and not a sinister attempt to destroy that monument, indeed, as
stated before the Monuments that will be destroyed are numbered 38 and
there are no protections for them under current legislations.

author by Campaigner - Concerned Citizens Alliencepublication date Thu Jan 04, 2007 00:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I was part of the group of campaigners who stopped the illegal destruction of our Ancient Heritage today. I will be there again tomorrow and will remain indefinitly until this vandalism has ceased, and justice is restored to the Irish people and our ancestors, who are being ripped from their Sacred Burial ground and thrown into skips.

Im appauled and disgusted at chronicler and others who have done nothing constructive to help Tara in her hour of need, but instead, use their hatefull energy to try to cause splits amoung us and to thwart our genuine efforts. Shame on you.

Furthermore, the name or rather the expression of Save Tara belongs to no one person or entity it is merely the most accurate way to describe what we are doing.

Thread carefully as under a law more Ancient then Tara herself, the hatefull and destructive energy that you send out comes back on you threefold, and I would not wish for that to happen.

Therefore I am going to send you Love, Healing and Peace

author by Campaign to Save Tarapublication date Thu Jan 04, 2007 02:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Campaign to Save Tara

Jan 4 2007

STATEMENT.

The Campaign to Save Tara successfully took action to stop illegal construction work and tree-felling from taking place in the Tara / Skryne valley on Wednesday 3rd January.

These works are illegal because the ppp contract has not yet been signed, and the public consultation to approve the tolling scheme will not occur until the 17th January in the Ardboyne Hotel, Navan..

Peaceful civil objections will resume again on Thursday 4th January, and on a daily basis thereafter.

Various groups have taken a unified approach, and are calling for immediate support and assistance to further the campaign.

Concerned citizens who wish to actively support these actions should gather in the car park on top of the Hill of Tara at 7.30am every day.

Beir bua agus solas.

For more information please call 086-175-8557

author by Timerpublication date Thu Jan 04, 2007 03:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Protesters bring temporary halt to work on new M3 motorway
Fiona Gartland

Irish Times
Thursday, January 4, 2007

Preparatory work for the new M3 motorway from Clonee to Kells in Co Meath was temporarily disrupted yesterday when Save Tara campaigners held a protest against the controversial road.

A handful of protesters entered a site at Baronstown, near Dunshaughlin, where scrub, trees and soil were being removed. They sat in front of machinery that was being used to move the scrub. They also sat in the buckets of earth-moving equipment to prevent them from being used.

Work on the site was halted and workers vacated the area in advance of an inspection by health and safety consultants.

The action marked the beginning of a campaign against preparatory tree felling along the route of the M3, including near national monument Rath Lugh, the site of a promontory fort in the Tara-Skryne Valley and at Ardsallagh, where a large number of trees have been removed.

Protesters argued that work other than archaeological excavation should not be taking place before an oral hearing on the National Roads Authority (NRA) draft tolling scheme for the motorway takes place later this month and before contracts have been signed with Eurolink, who are the preferred bidder for the project.

Eric Burke, a protester who lives close to Ardsallagh and whose garden is included in a compulsory purchase order for the road, said the tree felling began just before Christmas.

"They did not give us notice the trees would be coming down, they just came in and did it," he said.

"They haven't finalised the tolling scheme yet, so why have they started this?"

Local Sinn Féin councillor Joe Reilly has called for work on the route of the M3 to cease as the public-private partnership contract has not yet been signed.

However, a spokesman for the NRA said the preparatory work was not part of the main contract to build the M3 but was being done ahead of the site transfer and was being carried out by a firm sub-contracted to Meath County Council.

He also said the draft tolling scheme was a separate issue from the construction of the motorway and the motorway could still go ahead regardless of the outcome of the oral hearing.

"The gap can be filled in other ways," he said.

On yesterday's protest, the spokesman said the contractor had taken appropriate measures.

"There was no need to cause controversy, the decision was to make sure no one was put in harm's way, even if they were willing to put themselves in harm's way. The mature stance was not to engage and to move to work elsewhere," he said.

"That is what the contractor did. A health and safety consultant was called in and the gardaí were informed of the situation, but because it did not escalate they did not need to come out."

author by Timerpublication date Thu Jan 04, 2007 09:38author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Tara protesters disrupt work on M3

Irish Independent
Thu, Jan 04 07

PROTESTERS disrupted preparatory work along the route of the M3 motorway in Co Meath yesterday in their bid to have the road moved away from the historic Hill of Tara.

Campaigners gathered at Rath Lugh to block the diggers from clearing the felled trees.

Work was disrupted after a number of protesters entered the site and stood in front of the mechanical vehicles before climbing into the buckets of the diggers.

Siobhan Rice from Dublin, a Save Tara campaigner, said the work was being carried out on the outskirts of Rath Lugh, which is a defence fort of Tara, the ancient seat of the High Kings of Ireland.

"We still continue to ask that independent archaeologists be allowed to inspect the sites," Ms Rice said. "It is an area that is extraordinarily rich in heritage and has been compared to the Valley of the Kings in Egypt.

"We are not anti-M3 campaigners - we just want the road moved around the Tara-Skryne valley, where it would cost taxpayers around €50m less."

The protesters vowed to continue blocking machinery and attending sites where archaeologists are working every day as the preparatory work for the M3 motorway from Clonee to Kells continues.

Campaigner Anita Ni Nuallain (22) from Newbridge, who has been camping near the site, said: "We will be here as long as it takes, until we can get the road rerouted."

"I think people don't realise the importance of Tara. It is not just a hill, it is a whole complex - the whole Boyne Valley is interlinked."

Louise Hogan

author by Timerpublication date Thu Jan 04, 2007 10:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

M-way protestors vow to save Tara heritage site

Irish News
4 January 2007

By Valerie Robinson
Southern Correspondent

Campaigners against a stretch of the new M3 motorway in County Meath
have vowed to remain there "for the long haul" in a protest camp at
the historic Tara-Skryne valley.

Bulldozers were yesterday prevented from clearing felled trees close
to Rath Lugh, the site of a promontory fort protestors claim is being
damaged by the Republic's National Roads Authority (NRA).

Save Tara campaigners have accused the NRA of tearing down mature
trees at several sites on the route causing irreparable damage to "the
most important archaeological site in the history of our nation".

They also claimed that the NRA had already begun work on constructing
the M3 motorway although the authority insisted that it was only
conducting normal preparations for the project.

However, many locals support the new road. Dunshaughlin councillor
Oliver Brooks said "98 per cent" of local people supported teh
motorway, believing it would "help protect the Hill of Tara by
preventing back roads in the area becoming a rat run for local
traffic."

Mr Brooks also claimed that delays to the massive project had already
added an extra 200 million euros to the original estimated 680 million
cost while local businesses and motorists feeling the financial
strain. In 2003 An Bord Pleanala granted permission for the 50km near
the Hill of Tara.

The M3 Clonee to Kells motorway will bypass traffic bottlenecks at
Dunshaughlin, Navan and Kells and is expected to take at least 30 mins
off the journey between Dublin and Cavan.

However, critics of the chosen route have said it will run too close
to the Hill of Tara.

Two years ago, more than 200 academics wrote to the Taoiseach Bertie
Ahern and environment minister Dick Roche "seeking to avoid a cultural
calamity that will bring shame on Ireland".

Protestors yesterday set up a camp in the area, vowing to remain
indefinitely to prevent further damage. They have already stopped
diggers from entering one site by climbing into the buckets.

Save Tara spokeswoman Siobhan Rice said campaigners were "not
anti-progress or anti-M3", adding: "We've been calling for an
independent archaeologist to come in and assess all the sites in the
area. It should be somebody from the UK or the EU but that hasn't
happened.

"We belive that a viable alternative to the route would be to the west
of the Tara site, which wouldn't do as much damage to our heritage.

"it could be built for 50 million less and be four and a half miles
shorter," she claimed.

author by Dublin Citizenpublication date Thu Jan 04, 2007 17:38author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Dont be surprised if you see Gardai approaching the protesters with Batons beating them about the place for protesting against the destruction of our cultural identity. Why cant it not be re-routed?

Its amazing, the planning process in this country how it gives the go ahead for projects to be built on historic sites like Tara. What next, will they start building an overpass on top of the GPO?

author by Muireann Ni Bhrolchain - Save Tarapublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 01:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I spent today around the Valley and the sites taking photographs with another photographer. We also met with the protestors.
They are in very good form. I want to put out a call - if anyone living in the area can help with charging up mobile phones and /or cameras they would be very grateful.
They are challenging the work at every point and from every angle.
The destruction that is photographed here is only the tip of the iceberg. There is serious activity in the Valley and the site of the proposed interchange. It seems that they intend to target that area for construction first thus making it next nigh impossible to change the route out of the Valley.
The construction workers are quite aggressive with the protest but the Gardaí so far have been ok.
I hope to upload some photographs tomorrow evening as I hope to visit again tomorrow.
Muireann
Sabháil Teamhair/ Save Tara

Related Link: http://www.savetara.com
author by Ciaran Hughespublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:02author email ciaran_hughes at yahoo dot co dot ukauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

A Chairde,

Firstly, I find it most interesting that the two people who posted here accusing Vincent Salafia of being an NRA mole and a campaign divider failed utterly to give their true names. Come on, who are ye? Without your real names, you can hardly hope for anybody to take your comments as being in any way credible. How, for example, do we know that it is not ye that are the NRA moles?

I know little of what has happened with the Tara campaign(s) since it appeared to be united under the "Save Tara Skryne Valley" campaign. It seems to have splintered and splintered again, in a style that I have witnessed on all too many an occasion with Irish campaigns. This is, I am afraid (and I am truly afraid), precisely why the M3 will be ploughed straight through that wonderful valley.

It is a classic tactic that we in Ireland seem to fail utterly to grasp and prevent. It's what the Roman's, the great destroyers of Celtic heritage, called "divide et impera". I'm sure you know of it - It is a method by which one party creates or fails to prevent petty feuds among the opposing party, fostering mistrust and enmity between the opposing parties.

The only way to save the M3 is through unity. Everything doesn't have to be under the same name, there can be different groups and spokespersons carrying out different aspects of the campaign. Once there is a common goal and a complete lack of emnity towards fellow campaigners, only then can the campaign be won.

Is mise,

Ciaran Hughes

author by Siobhan - Campaign to Save Tarapublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 13:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thanks Ciaran. As one of the campaigners I'd like to clarify the situation, regarding unity within the Tara campaign. The statement by the Campaign to Save Tara above was made jointly by Save Tara Valley group, the local campaigning group, Tara Solidarity Vigil, who have been holding a vigil on the Hill since the Summer Solstice, and TaraWatch, of which I'm a member, and Earth Wisdom Foundation. More groups are coming on board. We are all thrilled so far with the results, and hope this trend towards unity and empowerment will inspire more people to come on board.

Actions are ongoing today, and we badly need more people to come and help, even for a few hours. Most protests are occurring on the public roads, so there is no danger of being arrested. Call 086-175-8557

In the longer view, we are calling on the public to attend the oral hearing for the tolling scheme, to be held in the Ardboyne Hotel, Navan, on Wednesday 17th January at 10am. The NRA was required under the Roads Act to publish a draft toll scheme in 2002, and to have an oral hearing if there were objections. There were, but it took the NRA four years to get around to doing so. Clearly, they don't care what the public say, and will sign the Public Private Partnership contract regardless, in a couple of weeks. We hope to see you there.

http://www.savetaravalley.com
http://www.tarasolidarityvigil.net
http://www.tarawatch.org
http://www.earthwisdomfoundation.com

author by Spycatcherpublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 13:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

In reply to Ciaran Hughes.

My real name is not the point. What difference would it make.

Every thing I wrote is fact, easly verified either by casual observation or by discussion with any of the groups or individuals who have had any dealings with Mr. Salafia on the Tara issue.

He has been and continues to be a devisive influence on the groups involved in this "Campaign". I suggest you contact them Ciaran.

He did run away from a mediocre campaign and then moaned on about how the Government had yet to sign up to the Aarhus Convention (Village Mag. 20/04/2006). Didnt he realise it would cost if he should eventually lose the case?
Why did he not take his case to the European Court, either before or after the case claiming the Irish Government was preventing him - an EU citizen - from pursuing the case for Tara because he did not have the funding to do so properly, funding which would not have been required of him had the Irish Government fulfilled their EU obligations by signing up to this Treaty.

With regard to his blatant attempt to hijack SaveTara - do you really need for me to spell that one out for you again?

author by Glangevlin - Save the Tara Skryne Valleypublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 14:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

why all this bickering about a name,surely we are all wanting to SAVE TARA.Lets get back on track and fight to Save Tara.

SAVE TARA

author by Eamon Byrnepublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 16:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Glangevlin you are correct on one thing at least.
These Groups do all have to stop infighting and concentrate on the job in hand.

However the name issue as raised by Spycatcher is very important.

Each Group involved in this campaign has its own agenda and its own alternative to the proposed M3 which attract to it particular supporters.

If one Group puts anothers “known” name to an action/statement they could do that Group’s image/reputation damage and loose them support.

author by Chroniclerpublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 20:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

All campaign groups have a differentness, both of approach and of campaign.
Most of the groups have met and there is free and open communication
between them= unity in diversity.

However- the naming of the group Save TARA is about recognition and good will.
Dr ni Bhrolochain has a good relationship with the media and an entitlement to use
her list to communicate her academic perspective from that address and domain name.
It is an intellectual property right.

The creation of an umbrella group with a similar name press-releasing causes
unecessary confusion and also it is just rude to assume the name that another
list has been working with for quite some time.

The goal is undisputed but an agressive media campaign that does not enjoy the
respect of all groups taking the name is incorrect and immoral.

All groups want to Save Tara- however ,respecting diversity is the key to leadership.
not ignorance and loutish manners.

STOP USING THE NAME. there is a difference between a media/legal camapign
and an academic/archaeological campaign even if the desire to achieve the same end
is apparent.

it is about recognising and respecting a different approach.

author by Glangevlin - Save Tara-Skryne Valleypublication date Fri Jan 05, 2007 21:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The time has come to get in the faces of the corrupt politicians who run this country - they do not care about OUR heritage and the WORLD'S heritage. Tara Valley could be and should be made into a World Heritage Park. Thankfully there are active citizens who this week have shown that its time to get tough to SAVE TARA.
We all need to unite; Tarawatch, Savetara or whatever your group is called. I have spoken to many people this week from around the world who are glad that we are getting in peoples faces. Sometimes, actions speak louder than words.

SAVE TARA

author by Glangevlin - Save Tara-Skryne Valleypublication date Sat Jan 06, 2007 00:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

More corruption....

The following information has been brought to my attention regarding
Rath Lugh. Coillte sold land at Rath Lugh for the construction of the
M3
motorway. Rath Lugh is a native forest that contains numerous heritage
and archaeological sites.

The sale of the land is in breach of Coillte’s commitments under Forest
Stewartship Council to protect heritage. In particular Criterion 3.3
states:

“3.3 Sites of special cultural, ecological, economic or religious
significance to indigenous peoples shall be clearly identified in
cooperation with such peoples, and recognized and protected by forest
managers.”

Coillte is a member of the Council but apparently there has been the
argument there that Ireland has no indigenous people! (I will not get
into that point here.

Anyway, please ring the FSC contact person Ruth McGrath 0872803010 and
contact the following KJones@SoilAssociation.org
; PMelchett@SoilAssociation.org
.
Also contact natureireland@yahoogroups.com while you're at it.

SAVE TARA

author by Muireann Ni Bhrolchain - Save Tarapublication date Sat Jan 06, 2007 01:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I was about to post that up - thanks to whoever did it on my behalf.

Related Link: http://www.savetara.com
author by nobodypublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 14:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Savetara.com is a web site, not an organisation. Although the good doctor does much good work, she publicly resigned from the campaigning organisation last year. She is welcome to speak for the academic contacts she has, in a personal capacity, as Dr Muireann Ni Bhrolchain, Department of Celtic Studies, NUI Maynooth. In fact, it would be much stronger than an unnamed spokesperson from the Save Tara campaign.

Regardless of what they are called, the three groups who did gather together weeks ago and plan the current media and action campaign on the ground, based on democratic decision-making, are quite capable of speaking for themselves when they decide to and in what manner they wish to. So far there has been one approved statement (see above). If anyone is being hijacked it is them, because the media and public assumes she is making official statements. Instead we see here efforts to prevent them from talking to the media, which is their only real protection.

But rather than grumble on about names, please don't lose sight of the fact that people are on the ground again today, and illegal works are continuing. Some are engaged in very dangerous activities, with some hot-headed operatives in County Meath. They need your unqualified support and co-operation right now. Matters of names and spokespersons are secondary, and are for internal group meetings, no public forums.

There is an enormous amount of work to be done. We need volunteers, not generals.

If you need to contact the camp please call 086-175-8557

author by M. Ni Bhrolchainpublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 18:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Dear Nobody,
The attack on Rath Lugh is more important than any personalised attack and I'll not take advice from a Nobody. Also the only effort to prevent contact with the media on the subject of Tara was not carried out by me and I have evidence for that.
Remember the Indy rules, ball not the (wo)man. This type of intervention is extremely unhelpful at a most critical time

author by Eilispublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 20:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

An American Freemason runs the SaveTaraValley.com.

And the Irish media do not trust Vincent Salafia for their own good reasons. I doubt if he's a mole, just another megalomaniac.

So who have we left only Dr. Muireann ni Bhrolchain of SaveTara as a credible representative ? SaveTara@Yahoogroups.

Keep up the good work on behalf of Everybody, Muireann. We trust you.

author by Eilispublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 20:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This is Peter White, the American Freemason Lawyer who owns/runs
savetaravalley.com

See/hear/read him for yourself:

http://www.ecologyofbeing.com/ecology_of_being_1.pdf

SavetaraValley.com is an American-based site. What's the Con ?

So let's trust who we know best, one of our own, one of the best,
Dr. Muireann ni Bhrolchain.

author by oNE OF THE MANY INVOLVED - oVER THE ROCK THROUGH THE BRACKEN MIND NOT TO STEPON SNAILSpublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 21:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

greetings 2 all teamhair defenders may the sacred enclosure stand 4 all times itl defentily outlive goverments and itl be there when agenda 21 comes in2 being .rathlugh very strange and interesting place with its 2 mainhills that are ringed with devensive banks and then more hills on it and hollows hey ive got it must be a fort ha ha and a fairly big 1 at that ud think they wudnt fuck with a place like that good lugh ha ha BLESSINGS SO WHATS THIS CALLED AGAIN A COMPUTER COMMPUTE THIS. THIS LAND AND ITS FUTURE WILL NOT BE SPOILED BY SHORTTERM GREED BY A FEW ITS LIKE BEING STUCK ON AN ISLAND SHIPWRECKED OR SOMETHING I DONT KNOW AND SOME FUCKER EATS ALL THE FOOD . PEOPLE POWER SAME 2 ANOTHER WORTHY CAUSE ROSSPORT ERRIS STAND STRONG THIS LAND WILL NOT BE CUT UP LIKE SOME CAKE AT A POSH DINNER PARTY FUCK YEZ BECAUSE SHORTSIGHTED AS U ARE U THINK UR ABOVE THE LAW U WILL BE PROSECUTED IN UR LIVING TIME U WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTED AND SHAME ON U TSK TSK TSK I BETTER BE OFF SO WE ALL HAVE OUR OWN SKILLS AND JOBS 2 BE GETTING ON WITH.

author by Eilispublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 22:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

My husband, who works in financial services, has examined the American website, SaveTaraValley.com and has come to the following conclusion:

It is being used by American Freemason owner of that website, millionaire lawyer Peter White as a personal tax haven under U.S. Charity tax break provisions - my husband is certain that savetaravalley.com is registered in the U.S. as a charity to that purpose.

My husband will try to track this American-based website from his office tomorrow - and will let Indy know of anything he comes up with.

Indy, I am sure, can track Peter White "philanthropist" through your own
U.S. based sister organizations.

Looks like this Yank is saving a Whack in US Tax out of the Save Tara campaign !

(and promoting his book/CD into the bargain).

author by M. Ni Bhrolchainpublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 23:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Hi Eilis,
The site is run by Heather Buchannan and Rosaleen Allen who have been involved with the campaign on Tara for a number of years. There is one link to the site that you mention. I doubt that either Heather or Rosaleen are involved with him. I think its simply a link. They are both excellent people.
Thank you for your kind words but I'm not the leader of the campaign, we all work together.

author by Eilispublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 23:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Yes, Muireann, we all know that - but the question remains, is SaveTaraValley..com website, which is based in the USA, registered by millionaire Peter White, Inheritance Lawyer there, who is a specialist in tax breaks there - is it registered as a U.S. charity for tax breaks, as my husband, who is a senior chartered accountant, believes it to be ?

Naturally such corruption would not be associated with the Save Tara campaigners on the ground in Ireland - you wouldn't know, and you would have no means of knowing

But Indy would certainly have the capability of checking it out. !

I believe that the website itself does not belong to, that is, is not in the ownership of anybory resident in Ireland, but that it is wholly U.S. owned, which is peculiar to say the least.

And the problem here is that the U.S. scammers who own http://www/savetaravalley.com can dictate that website without reference to the campaign or the campaign workers on the ground here in Ireland.

For they would effectively pull the strings and their campaign workers here would be puppets in effect, puppets of a scam to evade tax in the USA.

And who better would know all the loopholes than Peter White, Inheritance Tax Specialist US lawyer.

He seems to be anonymous on the web, perhaps deliberately so, as I have failed to Google Peter White.

Maybe Indy will have better luck.

I hope so.

author by Eilispublication date Mon Jan 08, 2007 23:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Right, try this for a start as I continue to Google Peter White, U.S. "Philanthropist " associated with the American-based website, http://www.savetaravalley.com.

U.S. Inheritance Counsellor puts his tax avoidance schemes for millionaire families in really lovely word, doesn't he ?

http://www.yeo.org.sg/?p=calendar&sub=article&artgrppk=...pk=16

Related Link: http://www.yeo.org.sg/?p=calendar&sub=article&artgrppk=7&articlepk=16
author by Eilispublication date Tue Jan 09, 2007 00:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Peter White is U.S. Citibank's top inheritance consultant (including of course tax avoidance schemes). He will only deal with the children of the wealthy who stand to inherit $3 million dollars or more.

And this is the self-same Peter White, Patron of savetaravalley.com U.S. based website.

Read on:

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/01_15/b372...6.htm

Related Link: http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/01_15/b3727116.htm
author by Eilispublication date Tue Jan 09, 2007 00:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Here is the Benefactor of the savetaravalley.com, Peter White "Philanthropist", Head of U.S. Citibank Private Bank for the super-millionaire kids of America.

http://www.citigroup.com/citigroup/press/2002/020805a.htm

Peter White preaches Avoidance of Death Tax, Charity as a means of Tax Evasion/Avoidance.

He is, apparently, in massive demand by Billionaires all over the world.

And he owns the website SaveTaraValley.com

It appears that the God of Mammon has a huge stake in the Hill of Tara in more ways than one !

Such total corruption, is anything sacred to this super-capitalists ?

Makes me sick !

IRISH NATIONAL NEWSPAPERS PLEASE COPY. WITH INDY'S PERMISSION - YOU HAVE MINE.

author by anonpublication date Mon Jan 22, 2007 19:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Here is the whois information for domain SaveTaraValley.com:

[Querying whois.internic.net]
[Redirected to whois.fastdomain.com]
[Querying whois.fastdomain.com]
[whois.fastdomain.com]
The data in the BlueHost.Com WHOIS database is provided
to you by BlueHost.Com for information purposes only,
that is, to assist you in obtaining information about or related to
a domain name registration record. BlueHost.Com makes
this information available "as is," and does not guarantee its
accuracy. By submitting a WHOIS query, you agree that you will use
this data only for lawful purposes and that, under no circumstances
will you use this data to: (1) allow, enable, or otherwise support
the transmission of mass unsolicited, commercial advertising or
solicitations via direct mail, electronic mail, or by telephone; or
(2) enable high volume, automated, electronic processes that apply
to BlueHost.Com (or its systems). The compilation,
repackaging, dissemination or other use of this data is expressly
prohibited without the prior written consent of
BlueHost.Com. BlueHost.Com reserves the
right to modify these terms at any time. By submitting this query,
you agree to abide by these terms.

=-=-=-=

Registrar Name....: BlueHost.Com
Registrar Whois...: whois.bluehost.com
Registrar Homepage: http://www.bluehost.com/

Domain Name: SAVETARAVALLEY.COM

Created on..............: 2006-03-23 16:17:11
Expires on..............: 2008-02-21 09:32:57

Registrant Info: (FAST-12785240)
Attn: savetaravalley.com
C/o BlueHost.Com Domain Privacy
1548 N Technology Way, #D13
Orem, Utah 84097
United States
Phone: +1.8017659400
Fax..: +1.8017651992
Email: whois@bluehost.com

Administrative Info: (FAST-12785240)
Attn: savetaravalley.com
C/o BlueHost.Com Domain Privacy
1548 N Technology Way, #D13
Orem, Utah 84097
United States
Phone: +1.8017659400
Fax..: +1.8017651992
Email: whois@bluehost.com

Technical Info: (FAST-12785240)
Attn: savetaravalley.com
C/o BlueHost.Com Domain Privacy
1548 N Technology Way, #D13
Orem, Utah 84097
United States
Phone: +1.8017659400
Fax..: +1.8017651992
Email: whois@bluehost.com

Status: Locked

Domain servers in listed order:

NS1.BLUEHOST.COM
NS2.BLUEHOST.COM

I can't actually find any reference to this Peter White on the site or on the owner info?

author by Tara campaignerpublication date Thu Jan 25, 2007 01:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The person writing as "Eilis", trying to spread distrust among the various factions of the Tara campaign is non other than Michael J. McGrath, self-styled "Archdruid of Ireland" from Kilkenny, a well-known alcoholic and trouble-maker. It's best to ignore anything the man says.
Drink up and shut up, McGrath!

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