Fine Gael Senator, Michael Comiskey, has welcomed the commitment expressed by Brian Hayes Minister of State with responsibility for the Office of Public Works to maintaining the residence of Sean MacDiarmada. Minister Hayes was responding to a matter which was raised by Senator Comiskey on adjournment debate in the Seanad recently.
“The Minister highlighted in particular the obligation upon his Department to maintain this historical site in view of the upcoming 1916 commemorations and stressed the role of the residence in remembering such a significant event in our history,” she said.
“The Office of Public Works has in recent months spent €30,000 in re-thatching and underlying structural works to the property and pledges to re-examine the site closer to the centenary commemoration.
“In addition the Minister expressed a desire that his Department remain in contact with the local Sean Mac Diarmada commemoration committee and stated the possibility of this relationship being built upon through co-operative arrangements being put in place. The community initiative for 2013 will be launched shortly and ensure that local knowledge is utilised and allow for the possibility of sites being opened for guided tours.
“Such an initiative would link well with the Ballroom of Romance Project and natural attractions such as the Glencar Waterfall, Parks Castle, the Cruises of Lough Gill.
“There is a possibility of developing the old railway line from Manorhamilton to Belcoo as a walking and cycle track. All of these sites together create a quality tourism product for the county.
“In his closing remarks Minister Hayes reiterated his commitment to the preservation of the MacDiarmada residence as a very fine example of a vernacular farmstead typical of the era. I will continue to work with Minister Hayes and his Department in the preservation and promotion of this important historical site as the 1916 anniversary approaches.”