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Conservation work needed on Church Island

The work is part of ongoing maintenance on Department of Communities sites.

Conservation work needed on Church Island

Church Island near Bellaghy.

A well-known historic site outside Bellaghy will be closed to the public for a period to allow essential conservation works to be carried out.

Church Island on Lough Beg is one of five sites earmarked for the work by the Department of Communities after routine condition surveys and site assessments.

Iain Greenway, Director of Historic Environment Division with the Department of Communities, said the work is part of ongoing activity to preserve the 190 sites currently managed by the department.

“The works planned are in response to the conservation needs of the sites, and are required in order that they can continue to be safe places for the public to visit and enjoy,” he said.

“It is likely that the full or partial closures will be in place for the next 18-24 months, so that the works can be carried out safely for staff, contractors and the wider public.

“These historic monuments are essential parts of our landscape.

“They are often constant features in our changing world, familiar landmarks and places that are cherished locally.

Mr Greenway said Church Island and other sites managed by the department were an important part of local communities.

“These monuments also form a key part of our wider economy, especially in relation to tourism,” he said.

“During lock-down many sites took on additional importance as places where people could visit, get outdoors and exercise.

“However, in order for these sites to continue to be safe places for the public to visit, they require regular and ongoing maintenance to ensure they are preserved for now and future generations,” he added.

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