2003:1322 - Derrinumera and Drumilra, Mayo

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Mayo Site name: Derrinumera and Drumilra

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E0257

Author: Bernard Guinan, Coosan, Athlone, Co. Westmeath.

Site type: Monitoring

ITM: E 504271m, N 793405m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.881224, -9.455997

Monitoring of topsoil removal at Derrinumera and Drumilra townlands, Kilmaclasser, Co. Mayo, took place between March and May 2003. These works were necessitated by an extension to the existing local authority landfill site near Castlebar, Co. Mayo.

The area (2.672ha) was stripped stratigraphically of sod and peat to sterile boulder clay using a toothless bucket. While relatively deep peat covered the test area, the southern half was generally shallower, ranging from 0.2 to 1.5m deep. The peat was deepest at the northern end, where it varied from 1.5 to 3.3m, but at one point it peaked at 4.2m in depth. All peat deposits were removed, exposing a grey, compressed boulder clay underneath.

While the peat was relatively homogenous, there was a range of evidence to indicate a degree of disturbance across the area. Some land drains were visible cut into the peat and modern dumping was also noted. This was generally confined to the upper levels of the peat. Evidence for turf harvesting (drains and turf banks) was also noted.

Two previously unrecorded burnt mounds were unearthed during works at the southern end of the site and were later excavated (No. 1321 above, 03E1209).