06/09/2013 Minister Deenihan to host significant seminar on UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List

Friday, September 6th – Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, will host a significant one-day seminar on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List on Thursday, September 12th, at Dublin Castle.

The one-day seminar, organised by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, will involve an international panel of experts presenting on a range of topics covering all aspects of the procedures involved in progressing a site from the tentative list to nomination for World Heritage Status with participation from representatives of local authorities and community groups.

Speaking in advance, Minister Deenihan commented:

“The three existing world heritage sites on the island of Ireland are globally recognised and of international significance. The tentative list also includes a range of sites that would stand proudly alongside these or any world heritage site anywhere in the world.

“Progressing one or more of the tentative list sites to full world heritage status would be extremely beneficial to the protection and recognition of the site itself, whilst also benefitting the local community and Ireland as a whole. Our country has a growing reputation as a heritage tourism destination, with 3.4 million visitors enjoying culture and heritage whilst in Ireland.

“Of course, achieving world heritage status is not easy.  It is the highest recognition for any site. It is also a process which must be grounded in local communities and supported by them. I am committed to a collaborative approach where the next applications for world heritage status are fully backed and endorsed by those who live and work in the area and by the local authorities and local representatives.”

The objective of the seminar is to equip all participants to organise and produce the detailed material needed by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to support the preparation and submission of substantive applications to UNESCO.

There are currently three world heritage sites on the island of Ireland – the Giant’s Causeway in Co. Antrim, Brú na Boinne in Co. Meath and Skellig Micheal, off the coast of Co. Kerry. Ireland’s Tentative List, submitted to UNESCO in 2010, contains an inventory of seven potential nominees, chosen following a full expert review and public consultation process. These are:

• The Burren
• The Céide Fields and North West Mayo Boglands
• The Monastic City of Clonmacnoise and its Cultural Landscape
• The Historic City of Dublin
• Early Medieval Monastic Sites – Durrow, Clonmacnoise, Glendalough, Inis Cealtra, Kells and Monasterboice
• The Western Stone Forts – 7 of which are on the Aran Islands, Cahercommaun, The Burren, Caherconree, Staigue, Benagh and the Dingle Peninsula
• The Royal Sites of Ireland – Cashel, Dún Ailinne, the Hill of Uisneach, the Rathcroghan Complex, the Tara Complex and, hopefully, Navan Fort in Co. Armagh

Representatives from Armagh District Council will be attending the seminar and have expressed a strong interest in pursuing World Heritage status for Navan Fort, Armagh, as part of a cross border application.

Speakers at the seminar include:

• Jimmy Deenihan, TD Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
• Dré van Marrewijk, Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands
• Dr Christopher Young, Head of International Advice, English Heritage
• Adrian Phillips, Member of the Tentative List Expert Advisory Group
• Loreto Guinan, Heritage Officer, Meath County Council
• Clare Tuffy, Heritage Centre Manager, Brú Na Bóinne
• Grellan D. Rourke, Conservation Architect, OPW, ICOMOS International Executive

Media are invited to send a representative to this seminar, and are requested to contact the press office to be registered in advance as a media delegate. Register atpress.office@ahg.gov.ie or 01 6313848/01 6313838

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, 23 Kildare Street, Dublin , D02 TD30. Tel: 01 631 3800 / LoCall: 1890 383 000

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