Sunday, August 23, 2009

Petition to Save the Hill of Tara in Ireland

There is an ongoing campaign to try to prevent the government of Ireland from developing a highway in the vicinity of the hill of Tara, seat of ancient kings, prominent in Irish myth, and of especial significance to Irish Pagans. I am using this space to promote the campaign, which comes from .

I encourage readers to visit the site and add their signature of support.

Thanks to Brian Walsh for informing the Blogmeister about this.

UN Must Save the Hill of Tara from the M3 Motorway


The Hill of Tara, Ireland's premier national monument and internationally renowned cultural icon, is being desecrated by construction of the M3 motorway. The works are in breach of international law, which protects this site for humanity, and the United Nations must intervene now.

Lying 30 miles north of Dublin, it was Ireland's capital for millennia; where over 142 kings were crowned, dating back to 3,000 BC. Since then, hundreds of monuments were built on the slopes and in the surrounding landscape. Today, the cultural landscape is defined by the remains of a number of defensive Iron Age hillforts which surround the Hill, lying approximately 2-3 miles away.


The M3 motorway is being built by the Irish Government, in public private partnership with Siac and Ferrovial construction companies, through the centre of this landscape, and a 50 acre interchange is being built 1,000 metres from the summit. Already, dozens of archaeological sites within the landscape have been excavated and demolished, and construction is due to be completed in 2010.


The campaign to save Tara, and re-route the M3 motorway has reached a critical point. Celebrities such as Bono, Seamus Heaney, Jonathan Rhys Myers, Gabriel Byrne, Colm Toibin , Louis le Brocquy and Jim Fitzpatrick, supported by hundreds of international experts in Irish history, archaeology and mythology have spoken out against the M3 route. National surveys show that the vast majority of Irish people want Tara protected, and made into a UNESCO site.

Nobel Laureate, Seamus Heaney said:

If ever there was a place that deserved to be preserved in the name of the dead generations from pre-historic times up to historic times up to completely recently - it was Tara. I think it literally desecrates an area - I mean the word means to de-sacralise and for centuries the Tara landscape and the Tara sites have been regarded as part of the sacred ground.


The World Monuments Fund, Smithsonian Institution and Sacred Sites International have placed Tara on endangered sites list, and others such as the International Celtic Congress, the Archaeological Institute of America, the Landmarks Foundation, the City of Chicago and the Massachusetts Archaeological Society have issued statements condemning the M3 route.


The European Commission is currently taking a lawsuit against Ireland in the European Court of Justice against Ireland, for illegally demolishing the Lismullin national monument, which was discovered in the pathway of the M3 in 2007, after being voted on of the Top Ten Most Important Discoveries in the world in 2007 by Archaeology magazine. The Irish authorities refused to heed the Commission's demand that demolition be halted, and construction is proceeding despite the EU legal action.


The Minister for the Environment, John Gormley, has delayed nomination of the Hill of Tara to become a UNESCO site, until the M3 motorway is complete. UNESCO has stated that it cannot intervene, until Ireland completes the nomination, which was due to take place at the World Heritage Committee Meeting in Seville, in June 2009.


It is clear that the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage protects all sites of outstanding universal value, even if they are not on the World Heritage List. Other UN agreements, such as the UN Global Compact, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, both human rights Covenants, and the UN Declaration of Rights of Indigenous Peoples also require that Tara receive the highest level of protection possible.


The only body that can now intervene and save the Hill of Tara is the United Nations. This petition is directed to the United Nations Headquarters in New York City, and asks that you intervene in the Tara crisis, and begin a problem-solving initiative, which will protect Tara and allow the M3 to be completed.

The UN must intervene now and enforce UN law, on behalf of the people of Ireland, the Irish Diaspora, and both the global community.



Please forward this petition to:

- all of your friends

- local and national Irish cultural groups

- historical and archaeological organisations

- political representatives

WE MUST REACH OUR GOAL OF 1,000,000 signatures by Dec 31, 2009


TaraWatch Web Site

Hill of Tara UNESCO public consultation site, hosted by TaraWatch

TaraWatch Facebook Cause

TaraWatch Facebook Group

TaraWatch USA Facebook Group

TaraWatch Twitter

TaraWatch Yahoogroup


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Seeing Eye Chick said...

What kind of Self absorbed asshole would consider building over the Hill of Tara? I mean this looks more like a plot from a bad 80s movie.

Just saying

Matt BP said...

I've read about this before, perhaps a year ago. Apparently its part of the whole 'Celtic Tiger' persona that the Eire government has adopted. They say that Dublin (incidently meaning Black Pool in Gaelic) is growing so fast that they're pressed for land and that the route through Tara is the 'only way through'. What I don't get is that if that is a fact and Eire is such a powerhouse at the moment, why can't they do a flyover over the whole site? Now at least they're not going within spitting distance of Emain Macha which is where the original route was going to be! It makes me really sad that this is going on but this is also why I hate governments in general. They're perfectly happy to spend billions of taxpayers dollars (euros in this case) to protect a mineral interest, but they won't a few million extra to put a flyover over Danu's Tits (which is what Emain Macha and Tara represent), which is a cultural interest.
Anyone who has been to Stonehenge will have seen that it sits in the crotch of two highways (admittedly one of them is not very busy). I have a painting that I made of a similar thing here, not 3 km from my home, where a freeway is being put through an Aboriginal sacred site. Because the local Nyoongar won't tell the government why its sacred (a common thing here), the government won't back down. Everytime they start work on it again, the people manage to stop it for another 6 months. The whole thing is a stalemate. A stalemate is something that the people can win, because while its occurring they have whatever it was they're trying to save. The only way that they will save Tara is to stalemate it, frustrate the government and force them to consider other options. Pagans would be of particular credence at Tara, because its such an important Pagan site. It's a shame my Ui Dubhda ancestors were from Connaught and not Tara or I could claim a spiritual link and go and pray in front of the tractors!

Seeing Eye Chick said...

They have no concept of the Aboriginal Societies, these guys are sworn to secrecy---We have Native Tribes in the States with similar practices in that respect. Its tighter security than the military. Sometimes I think that Governments use that as an in, to make an example of them. To try and display where the alleged power lay.

Of course in America we have politicians who apparently brag about never having been to a foreign country.


Baldur said...

Very interesting site with thoughtful and critical ideas about the modern day life from an idealist that shares my dream of a more just world that can be made into reality if we just stand together regardless of color, politics, faith, or race.

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