Cllr Oliver Tully is calling for a forum / advisory committee to be formally set up by Louth County Council to campaign for the monastic settlement at Monasterboice and its historically significant High Crosses to be recognised as a Unesco World Heritage Site.
Mr John Gormley, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government initiated a review of Ireland’s Tentative List of potential sites for nomination to the World Heritage Site List last October. He has established an expert Advisory Group to carry out a review and update the current Tentative List which dates back to 1992.
The World Heritage Convention (the Convention concerning the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage) was adopted by the general conference of UNESCO on 16 November 1972. Ireland ratified the Convention in 1991. We have two properties on the World Heritage List: Archaeological Ensemble of the Bend of the Boyne (inscribed in 1993) and Skellig Michael (inscribed in 1996). A tentative list is an inventory of those properties which a country (State Party) intends to consider for nomination to the World Heritage List in the next five to ten tears. In practice, a site cannot be nominated for inclusion on the World Heritage Site List unless it has first been placed on the Tentative list.
Monasterboice is being considered by the Expert Group for inclusion in a revised Tentative List as part of an Early Monastic Sites serial nomination. As part of the consultative process for the Tentative List an information evening was arranged for Tuesday 30 June in Donegans of Monasterboice. The meeting was well attended by people from the Monasterboice area, interested groups from Drogheda, local Councillors and representatives from the various government departments such as the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Failte Ireland, Midlands East Tourism and the Heritage Officer from Louth County Council, Mr Brendan McSherry.
The purpose of the information evening was to provide information on the UNESCO World Heritage Convention and Tentative List, and explain the nomination and inscription process to the local community and local community representatives. There was a lively question and answer / discussion session following a number of presentations.