Dáil Éireann - Volume 532 - 20 March, 2001

Written Answers. - Architectural Heritage.

488. Mr. McGuinness asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands the progress in relation to the completion of the restoration work at Black Freren Gate, Abbey Street, Kilkenny; if the arch has deteriorated in any way due to construction works in the area; when the last report was completed on the arch; the time frame for its completion; if she has satisfied herself that all precautions were taken to safeguard the structure; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [7694/01]

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands (Miss de Valera): As has been stated in replies to previous questions on this topic, some slight movement in the Black Freren Gate occurred while construction works were being carried out by Kilkenny County Council in the vicinity of the monument in 1997. My Department has been monitoring the monument on a weekly basis up to mid-June 2000 and no further movement was observed. As the monument appears stable and no further movement has occurred, monitoring is being done on a more infrequent basis since then.

I am awaiting a proposal from Kilkenny County Council to carry out repair works at the gate. The Black Freren Gate is not in the ownership of my Department and therefore I have no plans to carry out restoration works. I am satisfied with the precautions taken to safeguard the structure.