Staigue Fort County Kerry                                                                         Irish Archaeology

Staigue Fort in County Kerry is one of Ireland's most visited sites.  It is an impressive, magnificently built, dry-stone stucture.  It is the largest stone fort in Ireland and was built in the centuries before St. Patrick came to Ireland making it almost 2,000 years old.  It was probably the home of a wealthy land-owner who had great need of protection for himself and his family.  

 

They would have lived in this magnificent setting together with their guards and some followers.  It is an astonishing fact that the walls are many metres thick and have no mortar to hold them together.  Those walls have endured all that nature could throw at them in the form of rain, storms, snow, ice, etc., throughout the centuries.   However, The walls are now under serious threat.  They are under threat from the destroyers who ignore the signs clearly telling people to stay off the wall  tops.

photo:  www.sneem.com

There they were on my recent visit to the fort;  totally ignoring obvious instructions, oblivious in their ignorance to the stares from the other visitors to the fort; they were not satisfied to admire and behold, but wanted to be part of the destruction of this ancient Irish monument. I can only hope that someone recognises them and draws their attention to this web-page.  If even a small proportion of the tens of thousands of visitors to this site each year, climbed onto the walls, loosening and dislodging the stones, then we have lost some of the value of this Irish National Monument.  Perhaps I, too, am guilty for not loudly confronting the 'destroyers of Irish archaeology on the wall'.  I hope that this web-page will help make amends.

The only excuse for this type of destructive behaviour would be if the destroyers were unable to understand the English language.  That clearly did not apply in this case. They were heard joking about the signs.  Perhaps the Board of Works would consider erecting signs on the pathway leading to the fort and put the order in several languages.  A short notice explaining the reasons for the order would be of great benefit.

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