Campaigners launch fresh fight to save site

A FRESH initiative to break the costly deadlock over a new motorway out of south Dublin was yesterday launched by campaigners fighting to save the site of an ancient castle.

Environment Minister Martin Cullen is available to receive the plan despite the fears of Carrickmines Castle campaigners he is ready to give the green light for the resumption of work on the south eastern part of the M50 motorway.

The Carrickmines Castle Preservation Group has signalled it will take fresh legal action if Mr Cullen proposes giving Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council consent to demolish the defensive wall around the site. There is a Supreme Court injunction barring further work on the site as the High Court considers whether the site is a national monument. Delays are estimated at €200,000 a week.

The group launched an alternative plan, arguing that the interchange at Carrickmines is not needed, that a slight bend in the motorway would preserve the site.

An aide to Mr Cullen said yesterday he was due to make a decision shortly. Dail approval of his decision will be needed. The department official added that the minister was available to receive the alternative. “He’s listening to all views,” said a spokesman.

Vincent Salafia, of the Carrickmines protest group, said a new lawsuit will be filed if the minister gives consent to the council application, made in the name of the County Manager Derek Brady.

Mr Salafia said: “This application is a subversive attempt to circumvent the Supreme Court judgment.”

But in a letter to Mr Cullen, the county manager argued that under the National Monuments Act it is within the lawful remit of the minister to approve a resumption of work after signing joint consent papers with the council.

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