Between January 2019 and March 2020, ACSU archaeologically monitored all groundworks and carried out subsequent excavations at a large development site in Haynestown, Co. Louth. A detailed geophysical survey was also undertaken of two recorded monuments located within the confines of the site, a ring-ditch (LH012-101) and an enclosure (LH012-102), as well as the site of a circular crop mark (later confirmed as a Neolithic enclosure). This geophysical survey was used to clearly define the size and scale of these features previously identified through aerial photography.
Archaeological monitoring of the topsoil stripping revealed a network of field systems and their associated enclosures, representing settlement and agricultural practices, all underlying the modern agricultural landscape. Evidence for prehistoric occupation and burial practices was also uncovered, suggesting this was a landscape used during the Neolithic and Bronze Age through to the early medieval period.
The post-excavation analysis included an extensive radiocarbon dating programme; palaeo-environmental analysis of charcoal and plant macro-remains; analysis of human and animal bone; and specialist examination of pottery (prehistoric and historic), lithics, metalworking residues, glass beads, jet/jet-like jewellery, worked stone and bone, clay tobacco pipes, glass, coins and metal artefacts.