2003:1755 - Site 1(ii), Gortmakellis, Tipperary

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Tipperary Site name: Site 1(ii), Gortmakellis

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E0740

Author: Liam McKinstry, 9 Ballantyne Place, Steamboat Quay, Limerick, for Judith Carroll Network Archaeology Ltd.

Site type: Cremation site

ITM: E 609176m, N 643151m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 52.539630, -7.864728

Excavation at Site 1(ii) was carried out in Phase 3 of the archaeological investigations on behalf of South Tipperary County Council in advance of construction of the N8 Cashel Bypass and N74 Link Road. The scheme involves a 6km bypass route of the town and a 2km link road of the N74.

Site 1(ii), identified during testing of Site 1 by Neil Fairburn (No. 1719 above, 03E0295), was located between Chainages 7940 and 8180 and was 10m wide on average. It was located to the south of the existing N8 Dublin-Cork road.

Within Site 1(ii) a single cremation had been located and excavated during the Phase 2 testing. The work now was to identify if the cremation had been cut into an earlier, prehistoric, earthwork located under a modern or post-medieval bank and hedge. A metal buckle of an unspecified date was also recovered from on top of a loose spread of stone to the north-east of the cremation during the testing phase. Charcoal from the cremation pit was dated to 3460±70 BP (1940-1610 BC). An area around these features was stripped and the bank removed by machine. An area measuring 3m on either side of the modern bank was removed.

The irregular stone feature was 0.59m by 5.94m and 0.19m deep. It consisted of a rough jumble of subangular stones of varying sizes within loose topsoil-like material and had a south-south-west/north-north-east orientation. Two sections were also excavated through the modern field boundary. No earlier bank existed below the more modern bank and no further archaeology was identified. The area of loose stones was found to be the result of modern field clearance.

It seems highly probable that the cremation was an isolated feature.