2004:0247 - SHANDON STREET, CORK, Cork

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Cork Site name: SHANDON STREET, CORK

Sites and Monuments Record No.: SMR 74:34(01), 74:122 Licence number: 02E1378

Author: Gina Johnson, c/o Maurice F. Hurley, Cork City Council, City Hall, Cork.

Site type: Urban post-medieval/modern

ITM: E 567083m, N 572414m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 51.902899, -8.478341

The Shandon Area Streetscape Renewal Scheme, which began in April 2003, continued sporadically until May 2004, when work was suspended indefinitely. The outstanding work is along the upper (northern) portion of Shandon Street, from the junction of Church Street to Cathedral Road. The southern portion of the scheme is within the zone of the historic city of Cork and the northern section is within the medieval suburbs.

During 2004, the works revealed no below-ground features of archaeological significance. All the features noted were 18th century or later in date.

Shandon Street
The remains of at least thirteen stone culverts or drains were exposed on Shandon Street. Most were small, carried corroded cast-iron pipes and were constructed with local red-sandstone slabs and blocks. They ranged in size from 0.3m to c. 1.6m internally. These drains connected into a large north-south culvert that lay along the centre of Shandon Street. Its western wall (0.6m thick, 1.7m high) was exposed and removed from the junction with Blarney Street to the junction with Cattle Market Street. It was a well-built structure that was over 1.6m in width and was constructed of regular, flat sandstone slabs that were bonded with a coarse stony mortar.

Brogue Makers' Hill
A triangular concreted area at the junction of Shandon Street and Blarney Street was known as Brogue Makers' Hill. It once housed an 18th-century meat market, or shambles; a stone from the shambles, inscribed with the date 1737, is now housed in Cork Public Museum.

The area had previously been disturbed during the insertion of services and the creation of a concrete stepped and paved area. The trenches excavated in 2004 were irregular but exposed four short (c. 2.5-3m) and shallow stretches of sandstone and limestone walls, which represented the disturbed remains of the original market structure.

Blarney Street
Alongside the south-facing gable of No. 77 Shandon Street, a mortared sandstone wall foundation was uncovered directly beneath the modern paving. The wall protruded 0.6-1.2m from the extant building and represented the foundations of a bow-fronted east-facing building shown on the 19th-century maps.