2004:0341 - STAGPARK, Cork

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Cork Site name: STAGPARK

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 04E1120

Author: Bruce Sutton, Eachtra Archaeological Projects, Ballycurreen Industrial Estate, Kinsale Road, Cork.

Site type: Prehistoric activity

ITM: E 580009m, N 611956m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 52.258951, -8.292835

Archaeological works were undertaken on behalf of Cork County Council along the route of the N8 Mitchelstown relief road, which involves the construction of 4.5km of the N8 from Cloonlough, south of Mitchelstown, to the junction of the R513 and the N8, north of Mitchelstown. In the course of testing a series of pits were recorded at Stagpark. Excavation was undertaken in three separate areas within a short distance of each other. The site was easily waterlogged due to an underlying clay natural.

Area A was the most substantial of the three excavated areas, measuring 35m by 25m. One definite and two possible cremation burials were excavated. The cremation pit (C84) contained pieces of burnt bone. The other pits (C83 and C109) contained black, charcoal-rich silty fills, similar to the fill of C84, but no obvious traces of burnt bone were recovered. All three pits were similar in size and shape; they were roughly circular in plan, shallow and had a concave profile. In addition, almost 100 pits, post-holes and stake-holes were excavated across the site, although no discernible pattern was evident. One of the pits, C22, exhibited signs of in situ burning. Two sherds of prehistoric pottery were discovered in an extremely shallow feature to the south of the pit. No further finds were recovered.

Area B measured 15m by 10m and was c. 20m to the north of Area A. Two large pits, C1001 and C1014, were excavated in the area. The former measured 6.25m by 3.25m and was 2.18m deep. The basal fills were charcoal-rich and included evidence of heat alteration and in situ burning. Two groups of stake-holes cut the upper sides of the pit. One group comprised eleven stake-holes that ranged along the southern side of the pit. These were circular in plan, 0.02-0.06m in diameter and 0.06-0.1m deep. Six stake-holes cut the north side of the pit. These were more widely spaced and were larger in size. They measured 0.06-0.12m in diameter and 0.06-0.2m in depth. Pit C1014 measured 4.3m by 3.64m by 2.05m deep. It had been recut. No stake-holes were recorded on the sides of the pit. No artefacts were recovered from either pit.

Area C was the smallest of the three areas, measuring 15m by 5m. Two possible cremation pits were excavated, which resemble the pits in Area A in terms of size and fills. Both contained a charcoal-rich silty fill but neither contained burnt bone. No artefacts were recovered.