Gallowshill Motte Dungarvan

The local community group led by volunteers from Waterford County Museum submitted a joint application with Lismore for their two medieval forts to the Adopt a Monument Ireland scheme. The communities of Dungarvan and Lismore in County Waterford joined together as part of a combined application to adopt two medieval forts in their localities.

Gallowshill Anglo Norman Motte, Dungarvan

Gallowshill, Dungarvan, County Waterford is a large defensive motte or earthen castle site possibly dating from around the 12th century. These earthen castle sites or forts were constructed by the Anglo-Normans in the early phase of their invasions into south eastern Ireland. The motte in Dungarvan is surrounded by housing estates on the outskirts of the town.

The Community Group: Gallowshill Community Archaeology (Outreach Group from Waterford County Museum)

Gallowshill Community Archaeology applied for the scheme to find out more about the monument and to help raise awareness of the site for visitors and locals. A geophysical survey of the fort was undertaken in 2015 and in July 2016 and the community ran a very successful Medieval Fair Day as part of Heritage Week to help to raise awareness. The fantastic work of the group and their preparations for Heritage Week 2016 were featured on RTÉ Nationwide.

Since 2017, the group have continued to raise awareness of the site and are working with the Adopt a Monument team and Waterford County Council to continue to learn more about the history of the area. They have carried out a series of exciting archaeological digs that revealed fascinating insights into the monument, including the evidence of 16th century burials and a coin dating from the time of Henry II.

Thanks to financial support received under the Heritage Council-backed Creative Ireland / Adopt A Monument Scheme in 2019, Gallows Hill Community Archaeology engaged local children through a community archaeology project entitled ‘the Big Dig’ so that the children could engage in the history of Gallows Hill and Dungarvan.

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