2003:2001 - Portloman, Westmeath

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Westmeath Site name: Portloman

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 02E1585

Author: Breandán Ó Ríordáin, Burgage More, Blessington, Co. Wicklow,, for Valerie J. Keeley Ltd.

Site type: Monitoring

ITM: E 638660m, N 757357m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.564689, -7.416420

In October-December 2002, Grace Fegan carried out initial investigation and monitoring of soil-stripping in the environs of the Lough Owel Water Treatment Plant at Portloman (Excavations 2002, No. 1898). This resulted in the recovery of human skeletal remains and, at a separate location, a medieval spangle mould.

Arising from these discoveries, additional monitoring was required, necessitating transfer of the licence to the writer in 2003. The removal of the two spoil heaps from the sites of the finds to a greenfield site in Monroe townland in May 2003 was accordingly monitored, as was the stripping of the soil on the proposed Monroe site. No features or material of archaeological significance were discovered in the course of this work.

Monitoring of the soil from the two spoil heaps prior to relocation also included a metal-detection survey (licence No. 03R061), as recommended by Dúchas. This latter survey resulted in the recovery of a coin of probable medieval date on the site of the find place of the spangle mould (spoil heap B). In relation to spoil heap A, a fragment of what appeared to be human bone was recovered during the course of monitoring. However, use of a metal detector in monitoring the remainder of the material did not result in the recovery of any additional material of archaeological interest.

Rosanne Meenan undertook the final monitoring phase under the above licence in June 2003. No features or material of archaeological significance were discovered in the course of this final phase.