The site is located in the backyard areas of street-fronting houses and one extant house is of 16th-century date. Earlier medieval houses may have occupied the street-fronting plots although these do not survive aboveground. It is probable that the backyard areas were used to keep stock, and pens and byres may have been constructed. There was, however, no evidence of this type of use in the area investigated.
Three test-trenches were excavated within the development. The soil profile indicated that a considerable amount of fill had been introduced on to the site in the past, presumably to level up the garden, and this was most noticeable on the east end of the site, nearest to the modern street-fronting houses. Test-trenching established that up to 1.7m of fill was introduced into the site. The upper 0.7–0.9m of this was modern fill and included modern pottery and glass. The layer below this may also be introduced and was a mix of mainly humic soil (topsoil) with some boulder clay. Evidence for a drain was uncovered in Trenches 1 and 2 at a depth of 1.7m below the modern ground level. A large ditch-like feature was recorded in Trench 1. This did not extend across the site to the north, although it may extend to the south. There were no datable finds to indicate the period of use. The ditch was relatively shallow, although recorded at a substantial depth below the modern surface, and was only 0.5m deep below the original surface. The feature may also have been part of a pit, as it appeared to have a relatively limited linear extent.
Rose M. Cleary, Department of Archaeology, University College Cork.
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