The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian


Bullaun Stone


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.
ryaner Posted by ryaner
13th September 2013ce

Comments (3)

Sad to see, but the intervention of folks like yourselves will help, no doubt at all. If the farmer doesn't care and the State won't bother, I can only suggest going and tidying up, bringing it to others' attention, might be enough to at least keep it from vanishing.

I know it's a different sort of site, but Postie's tidying of Hafodygors-wen cairn/circle has made a big difference to it. The more people bother and make the effort to visit, perhaps the more likely the landowner might take some pride, although of course he might gets pissed off and try to prevent access (I don't know about Irish access laws, could he do so?).
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
13th September 2013ce
We got to the stone by a circuitous route. We were on the land without permission, but, as with so many of these places, we didn't know where the landowner lives. (You might say, well you could have queried in the vicinity, but if I did that I'd spend half my time or more doing so).

I got the sense, as I do with some places, that, if it means anything to him/her, this stone is an inconvenience and he'd just as soon as be shot of it. My recent visit to Mevagh , where for the first time ever I was denied access to a site, reinforces this opinion.

We did do a tidy up, and my friend was up for clearing it all out and revealing it completely, but I didn't like the vibe around the place, tons of shit dumped around the copse of trees etc., so I suggested he stop and we get the hell out of there. All of this flies in the face of our experience here earlier that day where the owner could not have been more helpful, and here where we would still be talking to the friendly and knowledgeable landowner, had we not made our excuses and left.

As for non-existent Irish access laws, nuff said.
ryaner Posted by ryaner
14th September 2013ce
Shame. At least there's good experiences to counter the bad (a bit). thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
15th September 2013ce
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