2003:986 - BLANCHFIELDSLAND (Site E), Kilkenny

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Kilkenny Site name: BLANCHFIELDSLAND (Site E)

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E1723

Author: Robert O’Hara, Archaeological Consultancy Services Ltd.

Site type: Ring-ditch

Period/Dating: Prehistoric (12700 BC-AD 400)

ITM: E 652316m, N 656001m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 52.652681, -7.226801

The project involves the extension of the N77 Kilkenny ring road from the Dublin Road to the Castlecomer Road to the north of the city. Site E is a prominent hillock in Blanchfieldsland townland and was identified during a field-walking survey of the route as a site of archaeological potential. Seven test-trenches with a combined total length of 192m were excavated across the hillock.

The principal feature within the site was a curving ditch which delimited the base of the hillock to the east and south-east. It survived as a moderately steep-sided cut into natural sand and gravel deposits, filled with gravelly sandy clay deposits with charcoal and animal bone; however, no artefacts were recovered. Test excavation at two locations along the ditch recorded at least two fills. The feature was 1–1.5m wide and reached maximum depths of 0.5–0.6m. Other features located on or close to the summit of the hillock consisted of small- to medium-sized pit features, some containing a lot of charcoal and others with occasional to moderate amounts of animal bone.

On the basis of this assessment, it is possible that the hillock was the site of a ring-ditch. However, further investigation is required before the site can be properly classified.

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