Tipperary
2007:1685
Kilcash
Castle
23263 12734
TS078–037
E2018
The OPW are undertaking a programme of stabilisation and repair works at Kilcash tower-house as structural faults have developed in the southern wall of the tower-house and along the remaining south wall of the adjoining 17th-century house.
Six test-pits were excavated by hand in May 2006 on the footprint of the steel and timber support that is to be erected to facilitate the repair work (Excavations 2006, No. 1875) and a further three pits were excavated by hand in April 2007. The three pits were excavated in the field on the southern side of the southern wall of the 17th-century house. The pits measured 1m by 0.5m by 0.6m. A thin layer of silt overlaying a layer of sandy clay was recorded in the pits.
Monitoring of ground-disturbance works associated with the excavation of the foundations for the steel and timber support was undertaken in July 2007. Five foundation trenches were excavated by machine on the ground floor of the tower-house and on both sides of the 17th-century wall. The upper humic layer consisted of brown clay silt with moderate amounts of pebbles and small stones. It was on average 0.2m deep. The subsoil consisted of mid-brown/pink silt clay with moderate amounts of coarse pebbles.
Trench 1 was excavated parallel to all sides of the ground floor of the tower-house. The trench measured 1.2m wide and was between 0.15m and 0.4m deep. A small area of red brick, 1m north–south by 0.5m, bonded with lime mortar, was recorded along the east wall. It was recorded, covered and preserved in situ. Trench 2 was excavated parallel to the northern side of the 17th-century wall. It was 1.2m wide and was excavated to a depth of 0.2m. A layer of brown silty clay with inclusions of stone was recorded in the trench. Trenches 3–5 were excavated in the field on the southern side of the 17th-century wall. They were perpendicular to the wall. They measured 5.2m by 1m wide and were excavated to a maximum depth of 0.7m. The topsoil was 0.3m deep. A large stone-lined drain, aligned east–west, was located 1.5m south of the wall. The drain was 1m wide. Several sherds of 19th-century ceramics and a clay-pipe fragment were recovered from the drain.
The upper mixed layers, recorded in the test-pits and removed during the excavation of the foundations for the steel and timber support, had accumulated on the ground floor of the tower-house and on the interior of the 17th-century house wall. The layers had built up gradually from fallen masonry, wall mortar, vegetation and birds’ nest debris. A small section of a possible red-brick floor was recorded in the interior of the tower-house but was preserved in situ. A stone-lined drain was recorded in the field to the south or exterior of the 17th-century house wall.
No archaeological occupation layers and no artefacts were recorded during testing or monitoring works at Kilcash.
Jacinta Kiely, Eachtra Archaeological Projects, Ballycurreen Industrial Estate, Kinsale Road, Cork.





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