John Tierney's blog

Surveying Inniscarra graveyard, Cork

Community archaeology is all about relationships. It takes time to build a relationship and effort to maintain it. For a heritage project relationship to work, to sustain, there must be equal benefits for each participant. In graveyard surveys the Historic Graves team look to publish good quality survey data while learning about a new place. Our participating groups look to learn a new skill (graveyard survey) and to do real work.

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Monster Graves and the Incultum Project

How has the Incultum ( heritage tourism research project (Horizon 2020) influenced our understanding of the archaeology of 19th & 20th century institutional burial practices in Ireland?
The Incultum project has allowed us to add innovative non-invasive survey to our usual work systems; testing an innovative GIS methodology to identify and analyse famine burial features. As field archaeologists the Historic Graves team identified the need to build a Dark History narrative based on scientific systems into our community surveys.
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Community Archaeology in a time of Covid-19 - the Heritage Council Community Archaeology Fund 2020

For the first time in two years the Heritage Council have a Community Heritage Grant Scheme ( to support community groups in a range of heritage projects. Deadline for grant applications is Tuesday next, 15th September; grant decisions are due by the end of September and all works have to be complete but the 23rd of November 2020.
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Lack of support by politicians for local community based heritage projects in 2019

It would appear that there will be no Heritage Council community grants in 2019 (

This isn't good enough as local communities throughout Ireland now have no specific heritage funding source. Faic, mar a deirfá!

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A Decent Burial for Jack Harris. (contains reference to an Aboriginal death & corpse)

Decency has come up on this website before when discussing past and present burial practices. It seems an archaic term; reminds me of the way our teacher's used to talk in school in the 70s and 80s, and come to think of it, the word 'decent' pronounced 'daycent' was regularly used by Cork teenagers in those days, meaning good or great. 'We're playing Carrigaline in the semi-final!' 'Daycent, we beat them last time!'. But when used in the context of burial it refers to respectful treatment of the dead.

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Heritage Ireland 2030 Consultation Document

Years ago I used to teach on a post-leaving cert heritage course in Cork city. We taught that Cultural Heritage has tangible and intangible elements. And that the tangible elements consist of built heritage and natural heritage. While we separated these elements they are all interconnected and potentially susceptible to damage. The Dept of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht are asking the public to engage with a consultation process (closing date 28 February 2019) to develop a National Heritage Plan and the relevant information can be found here.

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