Exhibition

Newtownbalregan

Rich finds from a ringfort at Newtownbalregan indicate it was no ordinary farm. The quality of the souterrain, penannular brooch and decorated glass beads all imply the site was linked to Dun Dealgan/Castletown Mount. Newtownbalregan overlooked the main road to the west that lead from Dundalk up the Castletown River.

Ringfort at Newtownbalregan

The site had been demolished during the medieval period, perhaps to ensure no-one could use it as a base to attack Dundalk. However, it was possible to identify the location of buildings from the food waste and rubbish thrown into one part of the enclosure ditch. Much of the ringfort appeared to be empty space, probably a large area for corralling animals.

There was a main entrance facing east, but there was also a small back gate leading to the adjacent large souterrain. The souterrain was too big to fit inside the enclosure.

ASI: Was the Souterrain found intact?
The collapsed section of the souterrain was found. However, it was only after this was nearly excavated that an intact tunnel was discovered leading into the hillside. Archaeologists then explored this gallery which lead to two chambers: the first people to see inside for 600 years.


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