Known elsewhere as Meelaghans, this is actually in Kileenmore townland. When we eventually managed to get to the small copse of trees where the stone is, I was hugely disappointed to find that it was no longer there. First thoughts were that either it had been dug up and carted off (unlikely, but you never know) or that it was buried under the nearby pile of manure.
We moved over to the other copse 100 metres south and found the single bullaun. The basin is set into an earthfast stone about 3 metres long and is quite substantial. I was still flabbergasted by the absence of the other stone and I didn't give this too much time.
We headed back to the nine-hole stone copse. I just couldn't believe that it wasn't there any longer. Rooting around I noticed a curve in the soil that looked like the lip of a bowl. No way – could it be buried? I knew that the stone was about a foot below ground level so I got a stick and started digging and sure enough, a bowl/basin re-emerged. So this is how bullauns get lost – neglected and forgotten about, the bowls fill up with soil and detritus and eventually they get grassed over.
Paulie attacked the digging with vigour, re-finding 3 of the large basins. I just hadn't the heart, thinking that the landowner doesn't give a rats and that the stone will get covered over again. I was annoyed and angry and just wanted to get out of there, curious bullocks adding to the tension I felt. I don't know what to do about this situation – petition for the stone to be brought into state care? Not a very likely proposition at present.