Archaeology here and there

Archaeologists have been excavating two concentric timber circles, an example of a “relatively rare type of site”, dating from around the middle of the third millenium BC at Ballygawley, Co Tyrone, which were uncovered during the A4/A5 road improvements scheme. Meanwhile, in Dublin, the foundations of a 17th Century theatre, the Smock [Smoke] Alley Theatre, along with a number of artefacts have been uncovered in a €8million project to reinstate the theatre on its original site – RTE report here [RealPlayer file]. From the Irish Times report

The original Smoke Alley theatre, which dates from 1662, was the first theatre in Dublin to secure a royal patent, issued following Oliver Cromwell’s death. It would have been where English actor and theatre manager David Garrick (1717-1779) staged his version of Hamlet. The theatre also staged works by Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816), whose father, Thomas, was the theatre’s manager.

Adds Eight neolithic sites have also been found during work on the A2 Maydown to City of Derry Airport road-widening scheme.