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New details on 18th century grave uncovered during shopping centre construction





By Sean Moriarty

Some fascinating new information has come to light on the grave uncovered during the construction of the new Aldi store on Park Road.

INSCRIPTION: Researchers were able to decipher some but not all of the inscription

MAPS: An old map show the potential location of the original grave and and its current location

UNCOVERED: The grave at Aldi as it was found during construction

PRESS CUTTING: How the Killarney Advertiser reported the discovered grave

PROTECTED: Mayor Marie Moloney and Padraig Barry of Aldi at the protected grave outside a Killarney shopping centre

Last week, the Killarney Advertiser revealed that an ancient grave was discovered during the construction phase of the new store.

Aldi have preserved the grave, which is dated from the 1800s, and have placed a protection railing around it.

It is the company’s intention to place an information lectern on the railing so local people will be able to learn about the history of the unusual find.

Aldi employed the services of Cork-based archaeology firm John Cronin and Associates and the Killarney Advertiser was given exclusive access to the report.

The report was prepared by Peter Looney of John Cronin & Associates, with assistance from Ita O’Brien, Andras Hindli and John Cronin.


The stone was found in its current location, but within a disused barn, during the early site clearance works in November 2018 and the scene was preserved until Cronin and Associates examined it in greater detail.

“The slab was lying face down on the surface of the rubble layer and consists of a single block of limestone carved and shaped into an elongated six-sized shield to resemble a coffin lid measuring max 2.2m long and max 0.95m wide,” says the report. “Five lines of text are carved on the right-hand side of the cross.”

Expert archaeologists were able to decipher some but not all of the text. It reads:

WHO DIED SPT_____________________
May She rest in peace Amen

“Shea is a frequent surname in County Kerry, and both Margaret and Jeremiah are also widespread. Without a date - which it is hoped may yet be deciphered -it may not be possible to identify exactly who the people named on the stone are,” says the report.

According to members of the Lyne family, the previous owners of the site, the grave slab belonged to their father and was in their possession until the turn of the century when its whereabouts became unknown.

Mr Tom Lyne – who used the barn adjacent to where the slab was uncovered before construction began - described growing up with the slab always within the courtyard of the family’s farmstead which would have extended into the current find spot.

“He indicated that the slab would have been standing against a boundary wall. It seems likely that slab was abandoned with the farmstead as it fell into disuse in the latter half of the 20th century, eventually falling over on its face (the position it was uncovered in) and its whereabouts becoming lost to the family. Thus, the grave-slab is most likely ex-situ having been brought to the area with the Lyne family around the 1900’s when the family farmstead was built adjacent to the southwest corner of the subject site,” adds the report.

It is believed the grave was originally located in a burial ground where the Lewis Road is now and that it may have been moved to its current location when that town centre road was being built.


“That area is now built up, mostly with residential properties. It can be assumed that many of the gravestones that were in the original Killarney Burial Ground were moved off-site and that may have been what happened to the subject stone, which then came into the possession of the Lyne family,” adds the report.

“Three local graveyards: Muckross Abbey, Killegy Lower and New Cemetery, Coolcorcoran, were visited in December 2020 to ascertain if there are any similar types of grave memorial. No stone of a similar shape was found in any of these three local graveyards.

“Only two examples were found to take a similar form: one of which was the same general shape as the example found at Ardshanavooly in Killarney. This stone, in the graveyard in Oola, County Limerick is also pointed at the top and bottom. This stone is very worn and only the initials ‘C B’ could be read. Therefore, despite the shared unusual shape, the stone at Oola cannot offer any clue towards the age of the Killarney stone.”

A second slab is at Abbeylands, County Waterford and is dated 1854.

“Once weather conditions allow, it is proposed to make a further attempt at deciphering the second line of the text inscription. This is the line that is likely to have a date inscribed and thereby add significantly to our knowledge of the history of the stone if it can be read. A rubbing was attempted in December 2020 but was unsuccessful as the surface of the stone was wet. When the stone is dry, it is likely that a rubbing will be more successful.”


Once all of the research work is complete a low-height lectern with an inclined tray will be placed adjacent to the presentation plinth to allow people to learn about the origins of the grave slab and reproduce the weathered inscription.

“The interpretative opportunity here is to encourage those interested to see if they can discern the inscription, and to reflect on the care and attention wrought on this memorial to a loved one and to consider how such an object found its way to this location,” concludes the report.

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Ballyspillane Community and Family Resource Centre launch Ageless roadshow

  Ballyspillane Community and Family Resource Centre is putting on a series of meetings and talks to offer older members of the community a chance to meet people from organisations […]





Ballyspillane Community and Family Resource Centre is putting on a series of meetings and talks to offer older members of the community a chance to meet people from organisations that will enhance their lives.

The first talk will take place on October 3 at the Ballyspillane Community Resource Centre and will continue thereafter on a regular basis.

Thomas Doyle from SpecSavers will give the first talk and other groups like the Alzheimer Society of Ireland, Alone, Family Carers Ireland, the Health and Safety Executive, Heartbeat Killarney, Be Active Be Well and the Parkinson’s Association of Ireland will join at future dates.

“We felt there was a need to bring all the organisations that can give older people the opportunity to come and meet organisations to offer support, services and activities that align with the life they wish to live,” said Sophie Haighway of the Ballyspillane Community Resource.

“The Ageless road show is a combination of organisations to help older people in the community. The groups that have committed to attend are the on alternative months. There will a guest speaker each month,”

The roadshow will be held in Ballyspillane CFRC the first Tuesday of every month from 12.30 pm-2 pm.

Further details from Sophie on 085 7723723.


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O’Sullivan chases National Rally glory in Clare on Sunday

It is hard to believe that it is four years since the Triton Showers-backed Motorsport Ireland National Rally Championship last visited Clare. Between the pandemic and the new event rotation […]




It is hard to believe that it is four years since the Triton Showers-backed Motorsport Ireland National Rally Championship last visited Clare.

Between the pandemic and the new event rotation system, the last time the Liam Cleary Autoworld Clare Rally ran was in September 2019.

But it has been well worth the wait as organisers Clare Motor Club have attracted a stellar entry that has both strength and depth.

The Triton Showers National Rally Championship enters the home straight this weekend and all of the title protagonists will be in Ennis for the penultimate round of the eight-round championship.

Leading the fray after six rounds are defending champions, Josh Moffett and Keith Moriarty.

The Hyundai i20 Rally2 crew have a 20-point advantage over Callum Devine and Noel O’Sullivan from Muckross.

However, the Derry/Kerry crew has won the last two rounds in Sligo and Meath and when dropped scores come into play, they have started one less round than Moffett and Moriarty which suggests, mathematically, the advantage is maybe with the Volkswagen Polo Gti crew.

But anything can happen in rallying and it looks certain that the championship will go to the wire at the Fastnet Rally in late October.

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