Photo: 14-17 Moore Street, 4th of March 2016
Throwback to 2016
5 years ago we were taking part in the Citizens’ injunction, together with other groups and individuals under the banner of Save Moore Street 2016. The aim of the injunction was to prevent anyone, apart from security staff, to enter the site to carry out ‘restoration work’. We succeeded to a certain level, on the 18th of March 2016 the High Court ruled in our favour, but at a later date the verdict was appealed by the Minister and overturned.
The 4th of March 2016 was a cold and wet day, but this did not stop us at all from turning up before 7 in the morning to continue our action and collect signatures for our petition.
Please read on below the photos for the report of the day
Moore Street Blockade – Day 24 — Friday 4 March 2016
The Moore Street Garrison had to contend with snow and a very cold wind this morning; the street turned white for a while until the snow made place for rain. The Lissadell workers did not turn up for the 3rd consecutive day but we were alert as always, protecting our heritage is a serious matter.
PETITION AND TOURS
The Save Moore Street From Demolition table is a familiar sight now during the day, giving people the chance to sign the petition and get their solidarity badge if they like. The bad weather played a major role today, not only the number of signatures was lower, there were very few tours passing down the street. Cork, Clare, Tyrone and Derry were among the counties of the signatories as well as Germany, Poland and England.
We are starting to receive calls from schools that enquire about tours around the Moore Street historic quarter. They can be arranged by us in both English and Irish, preferably booked in advance.
LEAFLETS AND BADGES
We have given out so many leaflets (both of the SMSFD group and of the overall umbrella group SMS2016) that we will soon have to have more printed. Issues like that are the reason for the fundraiser event at Hanlon’s tomorrow night which we hope as many as possible will support.
SMSFD are running low on badges now too and were saying they will have more made.
We hear from many people who sign the petition that they want to keep memories alive, they used to visit Moore Street with their parents as a young child, some long before the ILAC was built. The great-grandson of Thomas Doyle told us about his great-grandfather and 2 grandfathers who were all in the houses of the terrace in the hours before the surrender. Needless to say that people who had relatives that fought in the Easter Rising are very proud of them.
The hearings terminated today. The judge has reserved judgement and will deliver his written verdict before 25th March, giving notice to both the State and the group taking the challenge. No demolition to be done in the meantime.
The challenge was about whether the Minister was compliant with planning permission and the State countered this accusation to a degree, as they did the issue of the historic integrity of the site of the No.s 10-25 and that the area was a separate battlefield. However the State’s main point, put forward by McDowell, seems to be that the Judge has discretion; i.e. “even if you find we were wrong, you can still rule that what we did was in the best interests of the nation and therefore ok”.
In today’s court Minister Humpreys was accused of damaging the national monument, for example by putting holes in the facade of No.s 14-17 in order to erect their tarpaulin/ banner (as one of SMSFD’S campaigners on the street said when it went up: “They put more holes in it than the Brits did!”
The State offered essentially no defence to the charge that they had no planning permission to do that, relying instead on a claim that they were acting in the best interests of the nation and needed to get work done quickly (as though they hadn’t had years to do that!). And if they wanted to act in the best interests of the nation, why didn’t they do what is right and what the vast majority want, i.e make the whole terrace a national monument? Was it because the State was instead acting in the best interests of their friends the property speculators?
An alert late afternoon that was quickly checked out turned out to be a false alarm; however the incident showed the degree of vigilance being exerted on the street and the Terrace by activists and supporters.