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Minister of State McGinley opens “Lost & Found” County Donegal’s Archaeological Heritage Seminar Regional Cultural Centre, Port Road, Letterkenny, County Donegal Saturday, June 14

Mr. Dinny McGinley TD, Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, today (14 June 2014) opened a seminar entitled “Lost & Found”, an archaeological heritage seminar organised by Donegal County Council, in association with the Heritage Council.

Upon opening the seminar, Minister McGinley paid tribute to the crucial role played by farmers and landowners, stating “our rural communities can be rightly proud of the fact that Ireland’s legacy of surviving archaeological monuments is unparalleled in Europe – we possess a breathtaking number and variety of archaeological remains, which grace the Irish countryside and provide unique visual evidence of our narrative as a people.”

The seminar was staged as part of the County Donegal Heritage Plan and its aim was to raise awareness of the county’s rich archaeological heritage, highlight the statutory protection afforded to it and provide advice to, and highlight the role of, landowners and communities in caring for and conserving our archaeological heritage. Experts from the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, the National Museum of Ireland, the Heritage Council, and Donegal County Museum delivered presentations at the seminar as did a number of experienced practitioners in conserving and presenting heritage assets.

Minister McGinley praised the efforts of all those involved in the seminar noting that “public awareness of heritage and our collective sense of ownership in relation to our archaeological monuments is immensely strong in Ireland. Today’s seminar is an illustration of that commitment, bringing together a typically diverse community of people – farmers, landowners, heritage groups, community groups and other concerned citizens - who together lend their time, resources and expertise to sustain and conserve our wonderful archaeological legacy in Co. Donegal.”