2004:0101 - ANNAGH, BALLYCONNELL, Cavan

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Cavan Site name: ANNAGH, BALLYCONNELL

Sites and Monuments Record No.: SMR 10:1(01-02) Licence number: 04E1300

Author: Christopher Read, North West Archaeological Services, Cloonfad Cottage, Cloonfad, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim.

Site type: Medieval wall?

ITM: E 628481m, N 819141m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 54.120532, -7.564336

The site of the proposed development at Annagh townland is located just outside Ballyconnell, Co. Cavan, and consists of the site of Ballyconnell House and its associated outbuildings and grounds. The proposed development is to consist of 18 houses, 12 townhouses and 24 apartments, in addition to related access roads and services. The proposed development site comprises a large open green space around Ballyconnell House incorporating the ground originally attached to the house and its demesne. Ballyconnell House is situated on the west side of the site, with its L-shaped stable block located directly south of the main house. A castle site and bawn are located within the proposed development site and there is a well-preserved sweathouse in the southeast corner of the site. No surface traces of the castle or bawn remain. Ballyconnell House and associated stable block may have been built on top of them.

The proposed development was the subject of an impact assessment in May 2004. A total of fifteen trenches, measuring either 30m by 1.25m or 70m by 1.25m and to a depth of between 0.35-1.2m, were excavated across the site. There were no traces of archaeological remains, with the exception of in Trench 12, excavated to a depth of 1.2m. Approximately 25m from the eastern end of the trench, a substantial wall was revealed in the south-facing section and followed on for almost 10m. This area was covered with a huge amount of fairly modern rubble, as it contained large amounts of red brick. The wall was revealed below almost 0.6m of the rubble. It was surviving to a height of 0.5-0.7m. Where it was fully exposed, the width is just less than 1m. The stone is well coursed and is bonded with a white lime mortar. The foundation of the wall rests on the natural subsoil. It is likely that this wall is related to Ballyconnell Castle, either as part of the main construction or as part of the bawn wall. As no similar material was found in any of the surrounding trenches, it is likely that, if any more of the wall or related features survive, they would be located to the north-east in the location of the extant stables. Geophysical surveying will be undertaken to determine the full extent and nature of the wall.