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By Gordon Kingston, Heritage Action

“Jesus said to him, ‘I tell you, tonight before the cock crows you will disown me three times.’ Peter said, ’Even if I must die with you, I will never disown you.’ And all the disciples said the same.”

Matthew 26, 34-35

You’d almost be slow to think about Brendan Mathews’ recent, impassioned, statement on the fate of the ancient landscape at Bremore. It was so hopeless. Yet, considering the way that the wind is blowing, this most prevailing of Irish winds, there seems little reason to doubt his conclusions.

One sad point, in particular, stood out, and that was in regard to the ignoring, or disowning, of the situation, by the people that could have spoken most strongly against it. To let him use his own words:

“Archaeologists have walked with me over this beautiful landscape and were expressing their ”horror” at the suggestion of the tombs being destroyed; however, where are they now? Now that the time is getting closer to filling in an application form for an expression of interest in helping to dig it up at a huge cost, a cost that can never be recouped, ever.”

Of course their position is conflicted. They are, for the most part, dependent on the greatest potential spoilers of archaeology; the state and large developers, for their income and job opportunities, and must, naturally, be reluctant to be seen as awkward. Especially if a development appears inevitable anyway. But does that make it any less depressing?

In any case, Mr. Mathews suggests that the tactful silence may soon be rewarded. Tenders are being invited for the; “Contract for the provision of archaeological and cultural heritage services to Bremore Ireland Port Limited in connection with a new greenfield port at Bremore, Co. Dublin.”

Sorry friends, there’s only work for some of you.


December 2009

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