NMI Burial Excavation Records


Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 11E250

Author: David Bayley

Site type: Post-medieval


ITM: E 611799m, N 731638m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.334620, -7.822090

Stage (i) Test excavations and Stage (ii) Pre-excavation services along the route of the N62 Doon to Ballinahown Re-Alignment scheme were carried out over two phases in August and November 2011 on behalf of Offaly County Council.
During Phase 1 six trenches were excavated, totalling 593 linear metres, resulting in the identification of four areas of archaeological potential (Areas A–D). During Phase 2 additional trenches were excavated in areas that were previously inaccessible. One of these test trenches traversed a laneway that may mark the route of an early medieval road, the Slighe Mόr, or Pilgrim’s Way. A further test trench identified the remains of a former gatelodge, which is marked on the first-edition OS map (Area E). Phase 2 of works also involved opening larger areas to establish the full nature of the features identified in the test trenches (Areas A–E).
In Area A a post-medieval pit was identified, from which an iron knife with a bone handle was recovered. During the initial testing in Area B a possible ditch was identified, which was dated to the medieval period (2 sigma, AD 1194–1282) from a seed of indeterminate species. When a larger area was opened around this feature, it was found to form part of two post-medieval sand pits and therefore the medieval seed is likely to have been redeposited. Area C contained no features of archaeological significance. Area D contained a small area of undated metalling measuring 4m x 2m. Area E contained a portion of a foundation trench and an area of flagstone flooring, which may relate to the former gatelodge, marked at this location on the first-edition OS map.

Irish Archaeological Consultancy Ltd, 120b Greenpark Road, Bray, Co. Wicklow