The move to remove fencing around the remaining part of the town wall at Cappocksgate is on hold at the moment, as Louth County Council seek permission from Minister for Heritage Heather Humphreys.
The local authority have received requests from local residents to have the fence at the front of the Cappocksgate housing estate, on Sean O’Carroll Street. Within the fencing enclosure, the vegetation has grown to become unsightly and litter has also started to accumulate inside it.
Locals want the fence removed so the area can be tidied, maintained and incorporated with the surrounding green areas on the estate.
Currently, the fence encloses an area to the rear of the stump of the gate. It was first erected when the council built the housing development and was intended to protect the remaining stonework.
The local authority are behind the move to take down the fence. Heritage Officer Brendan McSherry contacted the National Monuments Service in relation to removing the fencing and despite initial indicators that the fence could be removed subject to some minor provisions, upon receipt of the official response from the National Monuments Service, the council now say works can only go ahead on the back of Ministerial Consent, from Minister Humprehys herself.
The council say they are unaware as to the reason for this change in position. An application has been forwarded to the Department.
Speaking to ThisIsArdee.ie on Friday, councillor Dolores Minogue said, “I’m delighted to work with the residents and council to get a positive solution for all. The residents are delighted that something is been done. They are anxious that the wall is protected as it’s very much part of the history of Ardee but this fencing is not suitable for the area or wall.”
The Cappocksgate site is the one identifiably upstanding remnant of the original Medieval Town Wall. The remains of the north wall – located on the northern side of Lamb’s Lane – are the only representation of the town wall on the eastern side of the town.
A study, conducted by Louth County Council a number of years ago, found that there was recent archaeological evidence to the north and west of the gate of a possible medieval stone wall footing and associated features running parallel to Cappocksgate.
The report called the remnants housing behind the high metal fence as “inappropriate.”