Introducing the seven new communities who have joined Adopt a Monument 2019!

We are delighted to introduce the new ‘adoptees’ who have signed up for Adopt a Monument 2019. This year we received almost 50 applications from interested communities across Ireland. Each of these communities were passionate about understanding, protecting and promoting their local heritage, and it was an incredibly difficult process to get to the final selection.

You can read a little more about the selection process here, in summary it happens like this:

  1. An initial assessment was carried out on all the applications to ensure that they achieved the key criteria (permission from landowner etc).
  2. Those that met the criteria were then assessed with the Heritage Council according to the strength of their application.
  3. The best sixteen applications were put forward for a review panel that consisted of staff and board members of the Heritage Council, National Monuments Service archaeologists and invited professional archaeologists to select what the panel believes to be the seven most suitable to go forward to the next stage where they are visited by the Adopt a Monument Team.
  4. The Adopt a Monument Team went to visit the seven communities chosen by the review panel, with a view to selecting four communities to join Adopt a Monument 2019.

However, on meeting all seven communities it was clear that all seven were equally brilliant, equally enthusiastic, equally as determined to preserve, promote and understand their local heritage and so it was impossible to choose between them. So we recommended that all seven join Adopt a Monument 2019!

While it was originally planned to have just four new sites join the Scheme, we received over 50 applications from energized community groups across Ireland. The enthusiasm of the seven groups shortlisted made it impossible to choose between them. Each of the sites are unique and represent important aspects of Ireland’s heritage. We are really looking forward to working with the communities to uncover the stories of their sites”

Virginia Teehan, CEO, The Heritage Council

The seven sites selected for Adopt a Monument 2019 are:

Esker Church, Lucan, Co. Dublin

Esker Church is  is an eleventh century ruined church in Lucan, County Dublin associated with St. Finian. The Society for Old Lucan aims to further study and survey this site and raise awareness locally of this historic monument. 

Moygara Castle, Co Sligo

Moygara Castle is one of the finest surviving Gaelic castles in Northwest Ireland. It was built by the O’ Gara family close to Lough Gara in County Sligo. The Moygara Castle Research and Conservation Group want to preserve and protect this important site for future generations. 

Kilkerrin Battery Fort, Co. Clare

The battery fort was built in the early 1800s to repel a threatened invasion by Napoleon’s Forces. The Labasheeda Projects Group want to conserve and promote this important landmark on the shores of the Shannon Estuary in County Clare.  

The Graves of the Leinstermen, Co. Tipperary

Located in the Arra Mountains overlooking Lough Derg in County Tipperary, little is known about this prehistoric monument which commands spectacular views over the surrounding landscape. The Arra Historical and Archaeological Society are eager to survey and research the site and raise awareness about the story of the site.

Malin Well Old Church, Co. Donegal

Set in the stunning landscape of Malin Head, Ireland’s most northerly point, the Malin Well Old Church was adopted by Malin Well Conservation Group who are hoping to further research the story of the site, and to work with experts to ensure the site is conserved and protected for future generations.

Kilmurray Lime Kiln, Co. Clare

Lime kilns were once ubiquitous across Ireland in the nineteenth century, but many have been lost and destroyed over recent decades. Kilmurray Tidy Towns adopted this lime kiln that is located in the heart of the village, to carry out essential conservation works and to make the monument a focal point for the community.

Moated Site, Ballyogan, Brandon Hill, Co. Kilkenny

A moated site is hidden deep within forestry plantation on the slopes of Brandon Hill. This site has been adopted by Tyndall Mountain Club who want to understand more about the site, through survey, research and investigations.

The Adopt a Monument Scheme offers communities expertise, mentoring and support to help them to care for their local heritage. Working in partnership with communities and state bodies, the scheme helps to ensure the sustainable future of the adopted monuments. The Scheme first began in 2016 with six community groups ‘adopting’ their local monuments, it expanded in 2017 when seven new sites were ‘adopted. The scheme is an initiative of the Heritage Council and is managed by Abarta Heritage. We will feature more detailed posts on each of the sites in the coming weeks.