In 2014 Wexford County Council commissioned the largest investigation to be undertaken on a Irish battlefield. The Vinegar Hill Archaeological study aimed to identify the extent of the battlefield, areas where intense fighting took place, the location of any temporary structures, weaponry, domestic ware, areas of engagement and fighting in Enniscorthy Town, and whether there were any mass graves in the locality.
In order to determine the above a multi-disciplined study was carried out over the past four years including an architectural survey of the landscape of Enniscorthy in 1798, A photometric survey on the ruins of the Windmill on Vinegar Hill, an underwater survey of the River Slaney, a geophysical survey examining potential burial areas on Vinegar Hill and a two phase metal detection survey carried out over suspected areas of intense fighting on Vinegar Hill.
This May a major battlefield archaeological conference will take place examining the works carried out as part of the study.
Friday 25th May
The opening evening of the weekend will include a drinks reception in the historic setting of the Presentation Centre, Convent Road, Enniscorthy, overlooked by stunning views of Vinegar Hill Battlefield. This will be followed by a welcome address and key note speech.
19.00 Drinks Reception
20.00 Key Note address
Saturday 26th of May
Saturday will feature a full day of lectures on the various research undertaken as part of the Vinegar Hill Battlefield project. The full days programme will include;
09.30 Introduction to the Vinegar Hill Battlefield project by Dr. Ronan O’Flaherty
09.45 The History and Folklore of the Battle of Vinegar Hill by Jacqui Hynes
10.30 The Architectural Landscape of Enniscorthy in 1798 by Edmund Joyce
11.15 Tea / Coffee
11.45 The Underwater Survey of the River Slaney by Dr. Niall Brady
12.30 Questions and Answers Session
13.00 Light lunch consisting of soup and sandwiches (please let us know if you have dietary requirements)
14.15 The Geophysical Survey of Vinegar Hill Battlefield by Cian Hogan
15.00 The Metal detection Surveys of Vinegar Hill Battlefield by Damian Shiels
15.45 Question and Answers Session +A (full panel)
14:30 Close of day lectures – Tea / Coffee
Sunday 27th May
Sunday will feature a field trip to Vinegar Hill Battlefield which will include a guided tour utilizing the new information gained through the research study in order to offer modern interpretations of the battle. Following the field trip conference goers are invited back to the Presentation Centre, Enniscorthy for the screening of the Vinegar Hill Battlefield Archaeological documentary. This documentary has been filmed over the duration of the project highlights the significance of archaeological research on Irish Battlefields.
11:00 Field Trip to Hill
12:30 Return to Enniscorthy town
14:30 Screening of the Vinegar Hill Battlefield Archaeological documentary
DAMIAN SHIELS: LECTURE ON THE METAL DETECTION CARRIED OUT ON VINEGAR HILL DURING HERITAGE WEEK 2017 IN ENNISCORTHY LIBRARY