2003:1540 - 13A & 13B Father Kearns, Offaly

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Offaly Site name: 13A & 13B Father Kearns

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E0491

Author: Dominic Delany, Unit 3, Howley Court, Oranmore, Co. Galway.

Site type: Urban; well

ITM: E 663531m, N 733001m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.343420, -7.045944

Testing was carried out on the site of a proposed extension to an existing dwelling-house at Father Kearns' Street, Edenderry, on 10 April 2003. The Archaeology Survey, Dúchas, had identified the general area as containing the site of a possible medieval church. The development site contains a derelict, early 19th-century dwelling-house with a long yard and ruinous outbuildings located to the rear. The proposed extension is partly located on the site of an earlier extension, which was demolished many years ago.

Testing comprised the mechanical excavation of two 4m-long trenches. Concrete slabs, varying from 20 to 80mm in thickness, covered the site and overlay a thin layer of disturbed soil. This disturbed material directly overlay a natural deposit of gravel and small cobbles, contained in light-yellow/brown sandy silt. The only feature discovered was a fine stone-lined well, which was covered with thick limestone slabs. The well is 0.75m in diameter and c. 8m deep. It is faced internally with a mix of rounded boulders and smaller angular stones. It clearly pre-dates the demolished extension (which was built on the covering limestone slabs) and is almost certainly contemporary with the 19th-century house. Its location did not present any significant problems for the proposed development. It was recommended that the well be preserved in situ.