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A modern replica of Stonehenge, which has been dubbed “Achill-henge” Photo by: Michael Mc Laughlin, The Mayo News

Officials order removal of Mayo Stonehenge-like structure

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A modern replica of Stonehenge, which has been dubbed “Achill-henge” Photo by: Michael Mc Laughlin, The Mayo News

An Bord Pleanála, the Irish Planning Authority, has ordered the removal of a Stonehenge- like structure which was built on Achill Island, Co.Mayo, by a high-profile protestor, the Irish Times reports.

Joe McNamara, known as the ‘Anglo Avenger’ following a series of protests against Anglo Irish Bank, built the structure as a place of reflection. He and a group of workers built the structure over a weekend last November without planning permission.

Mr. McNamara was once a property developer and is an Achill native. His appeal to An Bord Pleanála that the structure did not require planning permission was rejected. Mayo County Council sided with the planning appeals board and ruled against his argument.

In March, the High Court ruled that if An Bord Pleanála ruled in the council's favor, the structure must be taken down. Mr. McNamara came into conflict with the council and the court before when he was ordered to cease work on the structure, but refused to comply, resulting in him spending three nights in jail.

The Stonehenge-like structure is situated on commonage, to which Mr. McNamara has access rights. The structure consists of 30 concrete columns, each close to 15ft (4.5m) tall, carrying lintels in a circle. It is 30m in diameter.

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