Issertkelly Church and Graveyard
Community Monuments Fund 2022
Howley Hayes Cooney were procured to carry out a Conservation Management Plan for Issertkelly Church (GA114-097001-) and Graveyard, (GA114-097003-). under the Community Monuments Fund 2022. The Community Monuments Fund is provided by The National Monuments Service, Department of Housing, Local Government & Heritage and administered through Galway County Council. This is one of seven projects to be successful in the application for funding in 2022.
A multi-disciplinary team involved a Grade 1 Conservation Architect Lucy O’Connor, Kinvara Consult Engineering, Sherlock Archaeology, MKO Ltd Ecology Services and Mathieu & Mitchell Heritage Contractors. TY Student James Spellman, St. Raphael’s College Loughrea had the opportunity to visit the site and meet the team with Galway Community Archaeologist Bernie Doherty. He could experience the practicalities of working within the heritage sector and get the perspectives of each team member.
Issert Kelly (Disert – O’Kelly)
The place- name alone suggests that an early medieval ecclesiastical site, probably a hermitage or small
monastery, was once located in the area of Issertkelly. The ruinous remains of the church appear to represent a relatively large twelfth or thirteenth century parish church, but it is quite possible that this church was built upon the site of a pre-existing early medieval monastery or hermitage. There is clear evidence for a deserted settlement to the north of the church.
The clearance of overgrowth was carried out with permission from The National Monuments Service, under archaeological supervision after the site was surveyed for bats and nesting birds. The remaining structure is visibly unstable, hence supporting scaffolding was erected to maintain its stability in the short -term. A full Archaeological Monitoring Report is provided within the Conservation Management Plan which is provided below.