Monday, May 14, 2007

PRESS RELEASE – Monday 14th May 2007

Launch of Campaign to Save Tara’s Political Strategy

Calling on Electorate to 'Vote for Tara'.

The Campaign to Save Tara’s election strategy was officially launched on Monday 14th May at the Ardboyne Hotel in Navan. The Campaign endeavors to use every democratic means available to prevent the destruction of the Gabhra Valley through the promotion of the viable integrated transport alternatives which are still achievable, or the re-routing of the M3. It is particularly pushing for the immediate building of the by-passes at Dunshaughlan, Navan and Kells and the immediate re-opening of the Navan rail connection.

Since the discovery of the new national monument at Lismullen the Campaign has enjoyed widespread publicity and the issue is now very much on the local and National agenda. The Campaign maintains that it is Government arrogance and ineptitude that has created this situation, and that what is essential now is an independent archaeological assessment of the entire route through the Valley, and particularly of the Lismullen and Rath Lugh monuments.

Duncan Stewart at the press launch

The electoral strategy was outlined by Michael Canney: "We are asking people to consider each candidates and party's position on the route at the ballot box. We will encourage people to vote for the candidates who provide written commitments that they will support a review of the route, if they are elected to government. This whole road from start to finish has been a fiasco, characterized by a colossal waste of taxpayer’s money and motorist’s time."

Dr Muireann Ni Bhrolcháin, senior lecturer in the School of Celtic Studies, National University of Ireland in Maynooth and long term campaigner on the issue, said “The Tara issue is the line in the sand. If the Gabhra Valley is not safe- nowhere in Ireland is safe from future development in the spurious name of progress. It is physically distressing to see huge sites being excavated in such haste".

Duncan Stewart, the well-known environmentalist and television presenter also spoke at the event: 'The M3 is the worst example of unsustainable development- this artery will encourage more sprawl and development in Meath. The developers will be the only ones to benefit and it will delay, if not prevent the re-opening of the more desirable railway line'

Other speakers at the launch included Julitta Clancy of the Meath Archaeological and Historical Society and Eamon Matthews of the Fair Green Campaign in Navan.

The Campaign also presented their literature for the election. The main leaflet is a high-quality pamphlet that outlines in detail the heritage, environmental, planning and archaeological aspects of the M3/Tara issue. 40,000 of these have already been distributed with another 40,000 to be distributed over the next ten days. The launch also featured large format photographs of the Valley commissioned by the Campaign. These clearly show that now almost all of the archaeological digs now back onto one another, proving that the Valley is a interrelated complex of monuments.

For verification please call Michael Canney on 086 8528200

We have now received written commitments to re-route the contentious section between Dunshaughlin and Navan from:

The Labour Party ,The Green Party, Sinn Fein. Independent candidate Phil Cantwell is also in favor of rerouting the road.

Fianna Fail, the Progressive Democrats and Fine Gael are currently in favor of the route through Tara.