Saturday 19 October 2019

Blow to battle for Moore Street to be national monument

James Connolly Heron. Picture: Collins
James Connolly Heron. Picture: Collins
Ian Begley

Ian Begley

The great grandson of 1916 hero James Connolly has said the fight to establish Moore Street as a national monument is "far from over".

The defiant call came after the Court of Appeal yesterday overturned a declaration that buildings and sites on and around the city-centre street are a 1916 Rising battlefield site comprising a national monument.

The High Court had no jurisdiction under Section 2 of the National Monuments Act to declare the buildings and site are a "national" monument because that is ultimately a "political and policy choice", the three-judge court ruled.

Such choices must be determined by either executive or legislative powers which cannot appropriately be discharged by an unelected judiciary, Mr Justice Gerard Hogan said.

The Court of Appeal's ruling was a disappointing blow to the people behind the campaign to save the historic buildings from demolition.

But it gives them clarification that the future of the site is in the Government's hands, James Connolly Heron said.

"The fight is far from over. We now have confirmation that the power to issue preservation orders is in the hands of the minister [Josepha Madigan] and not the courts.

"These buildings on Moore Street were occupied by the volunteers in 1916 and are without a shadow of a doubt national monuments. They are now being threatened with demolition, which is why the minister must act."

In 2016, developers Hammerson secured a five-year extension of its planning permission for the development of a shopping centre on Moore Street.

Irish Independent

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