Fermanagh Area Plan 2007
Environment: Man Env 4 Areas of Significant Archaeological Interest
|The Department designates Areas of Significant Archaeological Interest around Devenish Island and Topped Mountain in order to protect not just the individual sites and monuments but the overall landscape settings within which these are located.|
The monuments and landscape settings of Devenish and Topped Mountain are considered of such local, national and, in the case of Devenish, international importance that they warrant special consideration in terms of planning policy protection.
Devenish is the most important of the churches around Lough Erne. It was active from the 6th to the 16th Century and still later for burials. A group of ruined ecclesiastical buildings, unique in Northern Ireland, including a 12th century round tower and a high cross, survives on the island as well as a range of earthworks. The landscape setting of this complex of monuments includes the lough shores and several islands beyond Devenish Island itself.
Within the townlands of Topped Mountain, Cloghtogle, Mountdrum and Coolbuck is an area containing a rich range of prehistoric monuments in traditional rural surroundings including remains of a bog with archaeological potential. The designation of the overall setting in which a number of individual and related monuments are located, or an area of historic landscape, as an Area of Significant Archaeological Interest, is intended to protect the individual sites or monuments and their settings and the essential character of the area from inappropriate development. Such designation is considered appropriate for both Devenish and Topped Mountain. The extent of the designated areas has been identified in consultation with the Historic Monuments Council. The advice of Environment and Heritage Service and the Historic Monuments Council will be a major consideration in deciding the acceptability or otherwise of any development proposals which may affect these areas.