Boost for the Boyne - A fresh dawn coming with new National Park


There's huge news for the home of Rings from Ireland in County Meath with the announcement that a new national park is to be established in Ireland for the first time in more than 25 years. There are currently six national parks in Ireland and the Boyne Valley Park is one of the most significant with worldwide impact.

The newly purchased site, which comprises 552 acres, is located within the wider area of the UNESCO World Heritage Site that includes Newgrange, Dowth and Knowth neolithic passage tombs. 

The Brú na Bóinne / Boyne Valley National Park is set to become Ireland's newest national park following the purchase by the State of Dowth Hall and demesne. The news has been greeted with widespread praise.

Newgrange Entrance
Newgrange Entrance

Archaeologists made an incredible find at Dowth Hall in recent years when a team who were surveying the site in advance of planned restoration work discovered a 5,000 year old long lost passage tomb which included a burial chamber and the remains of six people and stunning megalithic art. It's thought that there may be many more archaeological treasures still to be found at the site.

Tasked with creating a new plan to protect and manage this new public acquisition, the National Parks and Wildlife Service, the Office of Public Works and the National Monuments Service will all work together to create a new and exciting offering for this public land.

According to the Department of Housing and Local Heritage the plan is to: "expand measures and commitments to ensure protection of heritage at the site and to promote and enable the public to enjoy its natural and cultural beauty. It will include concrete proposals which support and build on research, education and public engagement to inform policy and future management of the property and its biodiversity"

"The plan envisages capacity building in the public, private and research sectors to deliver benefits for archaeology, the farming community and farmland biodiversity".

Speaking at Dowth Hall, Minister Darragh O'Brien TD (Housing, Local Government and Heritage) admitted that "rarely does the State get an opportunity to acquire lands of such significance. The landscape is of exceptional heritage importance. Here in one place, we have over 5000 years of recorded history in our care. It will significantly enhance our management of the Brú na Bóinne World Heritage landscape. We will conserve and protect Dowth's heritage, in line with our obligations to UNESCO and we will enhance responsible tourism, ensuring it becomes a standout destination. This purchase opens up possibilities for us to develop heritage partnerships, protect remarkable heritage and make it accessible. It is simply an outstanding opportunity
for an outstanding place".

Minster of State for Heritage, Malcolm Noone described it as an "incredible site", telling the story of "Irish heritage over millennia, layering prehistoric archaeology, 18th century architecture and rich natural heritage into one unique visitor experience".

"I have no doubt that Dowth will soon become a shining example of our rich heritage that people from near and far will come to admire and enjoy".

Posted on October 26, 2023