2003:1675 - Connolly Street/Mail Coach Road, Sligo, Sligo

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Sligo Site name: Connolly Street/Mail Coach Road, Sligo

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E1687

Author: Finn Delaney, Dominic Delany & Associates, Unit 3, Howley Court, Oranmore, Co. Galway.

Site type: 18th-century Dominican friary

ITM: E 569313m, N 835267m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 54.265299, -8.471045

Testing undertaken at the site of a proposed development at Pearse Road/Mail Coach Road, Sligo, was undertaken on 23, 30 and 31 October 2003. The site is located within a block of land bounded to the west by Connolly Street and to the north by Burton Street. The ruins of a Dominican friary, built in 1763, stand towards the northern end of the site. The friary is a protected structure under the Sligo Draft Development Plan. The zone of archaeological potential around Sligo town is defined as running 20m to the south of the south wall of the friary.

Three trenches were excavated to the south of the south wall of the friary; no traces of burials or any features relating to the early town defences were encountered.

Trenches 4 and 5 were excavated within the standing remains of the friary and these showed that a substantial amount of material has been introduced within the interior. The original interior floor surface was at a depth of 0.98-1.05m. The material above this level is all introduced fill and garden soil. The material below this floor level and which lies on top of the underlying natural subsoil may have been introduced during the construction of the friary to form a level surface for the floor. The depth to the natural subsoil varies across the interior from 1.25 to 1.6m below the present surface.

The cobbled surface and the associated red-brick feature and concrete floor (0.3m below the present ground surface) in Trench 4 are probably associated with the use of the interior of the church as a timber yard. The second-edition OS map shows a roofed building within the friary. The two trenches excavated within the interior did not reveal any original in situ features associated with the friary building. All such features have been removed by more recent use of the building and the introduction of large amounts of fill and garden soil.