Kilmallock Supervalu Redevelopment & Medieval Wall Repairs

Client: Dromcullogher Supermarkets Ltd.

Redevelopment of existing Supervalu supermarket on Sarsfields Street, Kilmallock, Co. Limerick including carpark to rear and adjacent building, “Creggs Shop”.

Supermarket Development

While not protected structures, the Supervalu shop and adjacent Creggs shop lie within the zone of archaeological potential for the historic town of Kilmallock (LI047-022---). Creggs shop lies between the remains of two medieval townhouses. Investigations in Creggs have found an amount of medieval fabric including cut and dressed stones, stone window frames, transoms and mullions along with many 17th/18th-century features. The existing supermarket was demolished, rebuilt and extended into Creggs shop and the yard to the rear. All demolition works on site were carried out very carefully and under our supervision to ensure that no damage was caused to the historic fabric. The remaining medieval walls were recorded as the modern fabric was removed around them.

Archaeology

Substantial archaeological works were carried out by Frank Coyne of Aegis Archaeology inside Creggs shop and in the yard to the rear prior to works commencing. Test trenches revealed evidence of earlier foundations within the shop and to the rear. A stone culvert and brick patio were among some of the features uncovered.

Medieval Door

The removal of modern linings from the interior of an extension to the rear of Creggs shop revealed a dressed stone arched doorway leading from the Supervalu shop into the rear of Creggs. This door may have been an exterior door leading to an alley way between two houses. The stone is well cut and dressed and the door features a beautiful arch on the interior face. The door was filled in with random rubble and lime mortar at some stage and it was decided to leave it blocked up to prevent any further damage to the masonry work. It now serves as a feature in the new shop with minor repair works being carried out to the arch which had been robbed out of stone.

Repairs to Medieval Masonry

Minor repair works were carried out to three medieval arches on the medieval wall section. These repairs were carried out to ensure the structural stability of the arches as they all had missing stones. The repair works were carried out using stone sourced on site from the removal of post medieval elements. Creggs medieval wall was substantially altered during the 18th/19th-centuries and the insertion of up to five chimney flues dramatically weakened the wall and a detailed structural stabilisation strategy was put in place.

During demolition works to post medieval structures on site, many medieval fragments were uncovered which had been reused as random rubble for building. All masonry removed from site was inspected prior to removal and any medieval fragments were kept, recorded and stored securely on site. These fragments included pieces of dressed stone, fragments of mullions and transoms and dressed arch stones.

The new shop was officially opened in March 2015 and Creggs medieval wall can now be seen as a feature inside the shop.