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Built Heritage, Archaeology and Monuments

Archaeological Heritage in Kildare

Archaeology is the study of past societies through the examination of material remains left by human activity. County Kildare has a rich and varied archaeological heritage.

Record of Monuments and Places

The National Monuments and Historic Properties Service, carries out the Archaeological Survey of Ireland. All known sites and monuments are identified and listed for protection in the Record of Monuments and Places, a statutory inventory of sites protected under the National Monuments Acts.

The Record of Monuments and Places is a set of 6" maps of County Kildare with an accompanying index which shows all the sites, monuments and zones of archaeological potential, recorded to date and protected in the county. The inventory concentrates on pre 1700 AD sites.

The Record of Monuments and Places is available to the public at the Planning Office, Heritage Office and Libraries of Kildare County Council.

Only a small section of our ancient monuments is in state ownership. The remainder are protected by the state under the National Monuments Acts but the care and preservation of these features depends largely on the interests and respect of the individual landowner.

Archaeological Objects

The National Museum of Ireland is the repository of the national collection of archaeological objects. As there is no county museum or designated repository in County Kildare all archaeological objects that are discovered should, by law, be deposited with the National Museum, as they belong to the State. (Under the National Monuments Amendment Act 1994) When an item is found, you should contact the National Museum within 48 hours. Tel 01-6777444.

NRA Archaeological Discoveries - Leaflet and Poster Series

The NRA has launched NRA Archaeological Discoveries - a leaflet and poster series on archaeological discoveries on various road schemes.  The leaflets and posters are included here in PDF. In order to read PDF files, you need to have Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® installed in your computer.

Guide to Excavations at Ardreigh

Click the link to access Guide to Excavations at Ardreigh in PDF format.  This publication details the archaeological excavations at Ardreigh near Athy, Co. Kildare commissioned by Kildare County Council in advance of the realignment of part of the R417 road between Athy and Carlow.  This investigation established that the area had been occupied for thousands of years and highly significant archaeological remains were preserved beneath the modern topsoil.  An amazing and complex archaeological site was revealed with stone tools which were used by some of Ireland's first settlers around 9000 years ago (7000 BC) were recovered.