2003:1520 - Cloncreen Bog, Ballykilleen, Offaly

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Offaly Site name: Cloncreen Bog, Ballykilleen

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E1223

Author: Jane Whitaker, ADS Ltd, Windsor House, 11 Fairview Strand, Dublin 3.

Site type: Two tertiary toghers

ITM: E 660240m, N 727946m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.298380, -7.096320

Two field surface sites (OF-BKL0076 and OF-BKL0079) classified during the survey as tertiary toghers were excavated in three cuttings. OF-BKL0076 was a mixture of brushwood, timbers and occasional twigs, oriented east-west, while OF-BKL0079 was composed of densely laid mixed brushwood and twigs with a roundwood fragment and a small split timber. Cutting 1, which measured 2m by 4m and was excavated at OF-BKL0076, was located towards the centre of the production field. Cutting 2 also measured 2m by 4m and was excavated at site OF-BKL0079. A third cutting (Cutting 3) also measuring 4m by 2m was excavated along the same field surface 10m to the east of Cutting 2, where a timber was exposed on the field surface, to establish any possible relationship with the timbers exposed in Cutting 2.

Cutting 1 had little remaining peat cover and the site itself was very fragmentary and consisted of 23 mainly north-west/south-east-oriented light brushwood elements. The elements ranged from 100 to 300mm in diameter and 0.1 to 1.37m in length. The upper surfaces of these elements were machine damaged and were in relatively poor condition. Three chisel-point toolmarks were recorded. The facets were flat in character and had cutting angles ranging from 10¡ to 30¡. Some of the elements recorded during the survey were no longer in place, either because of peat production or because of sampling during the survey process. The entire site was exposed within the cutting boundaries and measured a maximum of 1.2m in width (east-west) by a maximum of 2.6m. There was no remaining evidence to the north or south of the cutting to suggest that the site continued further in either direction.

Cutting 2 also had little peat cover remaining. Two fragmentary timber remains were exposed, one of which was oriented north-east/south-west while the other was oriented east-west. The north-east/south-west timber measured 0.12m in width and 2.6m in length and appears to have been a tangential split. The other timber was incomplete and was a half split roundwood that measured 0.16m in width and the remaining length of which was 1.22m.

Because of the inconclusive nature of the wood remains in Cutting 2, a third cutting (Cutting 3) was established over timber remains that were exposed on the field surface 10m to the north-east, to investigate if there was any relationship between the two sightings. This cutting also measured 4m by 2m in size and also had very little peat cover remaining. Four fragmentary elements were excavated in total. Two of the elements were planks, while the other two were a brushwood and roundwood. The planks were 0.19m and 0.22m, respectively, and both were 1.54m in length and were oriented east-west. The brushwood was 35mm in diameter, 0.79m in length and was also oriented east-west. The roundwood was 0.19m in diameter and 1.54m in length and was oriented north-east/south-west. The remains contained within the cutting were too fragmentary to associate them definitely with those excavated in Cutting 2, but dating may explain these sites.

Because of the fragmentary wood remains contained within the excavated cuttings, it is not possible to attribute a definite function or classification to them.