2003:1971 - Finea, Westmeath

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Westmeath Site name: Finea

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E1528

Author: Stuart D. Elder, The Archaeology Company, Birr Technology Centre, Mill Island, Birr, Co. Offaly.

Site type: No archaeological significance

ITM: E 640242m, N 781317m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.779871, -7.389424

Monitoring of topsoil clearance was carried out during construction works for an extension to the rear of the Quality Irish Foods Ltd plant at Finea village, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath. The development is located on the eastern side of the village c. 130m south-east of the Inney River.

The site had been cleared of trees, scrub and fences prior to the initial phase of monitoring, which commenced on 22 September. A series of cottages fronting the road had been demolished prior to the construction phase and an access road had been laid over the field surface from the main street.

The footprint of the building measured 35m north-east/south-west by 24m, and was excavated to subsoil level at a depth of 0.1-0.5m. The topsoil was well-rooted organic-rich dark-grey clay silt containing occasional small to medium subangular stones and occasional pieces of 20th-century plastic, glass and ceramics. In addition, there were 18th- and 19th-century ceramics and glass, which were found in the same horizon as the modern finds and therefore could not be regarded as being in situ. The substrate comprised grey/brown gravelly clay with patches of yellow gravel.

Monitoring of c. 45% of the total area for topsoil-stripping was carried out in the initial stage.

The second phase of monitoring took place on 6-9 October 2003, when topsoil-stripping was monitored on the remainder of the site, excluding an area in the south-west corner measuring 10m by 10m. The stratigraphic profile was the same as in Phase 1, as were the finds. Nothing of archaeological significance was noted throughout the monitoring.