Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Excavation from high above

I recently reread a post by Colm Moriarty of irisharchaeology.ie [Facebook | Blog | Shop] that reminded me of something I wanted to share. He put together a simply beautiful post of Aerial Views of Ireland’s Ancient Royal Sites – go on, have a look & come back when you’re ready! ... I'll wait ...

Anyway …

A little while ago, for no particularly good reason, I was scanning over central and east Belfast using both Google and Bing maps. Although not visible on the current Google aerial map, the Bing map showed an abandoned (i.e. not backfilled) portion of the archaeological excavation of the Sirocco Works, an 18th to 20th century glassworks on the banks of the River Lagan. I was involved in a very early stage of the archaeological work there, spending endless, tedious hours watching the removal of turbine sheds and concrete flooring on the site. This was followed up by an excavation of the western portion of the site (brief report here). The lot I was working for at the time didn’t get the contract to carry out the excavation of the eastern portion of the site, and they don’t appear to have submitted a report to the excavations.ie site. This is the section of the site that remains open and visible on the aerial photo. I can easily make out a couple of circular structures (probably kilns) and a whole tangle of criss-crossing linear walls ...

Sirocco on the banks of the Lagan


I’ve tried looking for a number of excavations I’ve been associated with over the years, but this is the only one I can find – and I’m only tangentially associated with that! Can anyone find evidence of excavated sites in progress in Bing or Google maps? Let me know & I’ll post photos here! 

Detailed view of excavated area