The third Galway International Heritage Conference took place on Sep 20th with an overall theme of Ireland and the Wider World: Aspects of Ireland’s Maritime Heritage. Programme
Pat McManus represented the Charts Special Interest Group (CSIG) at the conference. Of particular interest to him as a member of the CSIG surveying team, was the work and talk by Karl Brady, Connie Kelleher and Fionnbarr Moore of the Underwater Archaeological Unit, National Monuments Section of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. CSIG members had the pleasure of listening to Karl in April 2013 as he described how they document, manage and investigate submerged archaeological finds.
Pat writes, “I am licensed by the Department and the Unit to carry out archaeological surveys on Lough Ree. A summer spent surveying the area around Warren Point, St Johns and the Wood Shoal has resulted in some interesting finds, one modern wreck and possibly three log boats.
Pat has recently worked with another of the speakers, Rory McNeary of the Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Ulster, on the Rindoon and Safe Harbour site. Rory has carried out bathymetric surveys around the northern coast and on the inland waterways of Northern Ireland. During Rory’s study of Safe Harbour, he determined that this area might have been used by Vikings to build and repair their ships. Axes were found that would have been used for working with wood. Pat has also found what is believed to be a second harbour on the south side of the peninsula.
During the conference, Pat presented some examples of the CSIG’s work on the Shannon and Lough Ree.
Pat states, “I can safely declare that our work is up there with the best and was very well received. I know that we can call on Connie, Fionnbarr, Karl and Rory when we need their expertise.”