Archaeological features in our forests

There are hundreds of archaeological features that lie within the Forest Service estate, either under woodland or in one of our many areas of open space. Some are visible and clearly recognisable in the landscape while others are subtler and may required a trained eye.


These are monuments which need to be carefully managed to reduce erosion and prevent damage, and protected from further change, so that future generations can understand and enjoy them.

Historic Monuments have been protected by legislation since 1869. Under the current legislation, Historic Monuments and Archaeological Objects (NI) Order 1995, monuments may be protected by taking them into state care or by scheduling them for protection.

Currently on Forest Service property there are seven monuments in state care and forty-four scheduled for protection. These range from a 'Passage Tomb' in Slieve Gullion, County. Armagh, that is in state care, to a 'Sweat House' in Lough Navar, County Fermanagh, that is a scheduled monument.

As well as the fifty-one monuments mentioned above there are many other sites that are recorded on the register of Statutory Monuments but not covered by the same legislation. These sites constitute a valuable resource and are currently being mapped and recorded onto a database that will, in the future, help us better identify and protect them.

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