A local man, Patrick Caulfield discovered the Ceide Fields when he noticed piles of rocks which were uncovered as he cut away some peat for fuel. It was only when Patrick’s son Seamus, having studied archaeology, began to investigate further, that Father and Son started to fully understand what they had found. Investigations revealed a complex of fields, houses and megalithic tombs concealed by the growth of blanket bogs, and not raised bogs, over the course of many centuries.
In an effort to preserve the site a simple, but backbreaking method was used to explore the fields. This involved the location and mapping of these hidden walls by probing with iron rods with cross handles. We were given a demonstration of this work, and it looked very difficult.
It was discovered that these people arrived in a highly forested area. This was cleared to provide access to grazing land and to provide building material and firewood for the community, then the fields were then laid out in order.
The climate at the time was much warmer, leading to almost year round growth potential, however, the climate changed and the community abandoned this area and moved to more suitable areas.
This was a fascinating place to visit, and I would return to the site again.