Brú na Bóinne World Heritage Site Research Framework


The Bend of the Boyne - or Brú na Bóinne - is internationally renowned for its elaborate Neolithic passage tombs, containing the largest assemblage of megalithic art in Europe.

Brú na Bóinne has been an important ritual, social and economic centre for thousands of years.

Its universal value was recognised in 1993 when it was designated as a World Heritage Site - only one of three on the island of Ireland.

The 2002 Brú na Bóinne World Heritage Site Management Plan identifies the importance of establishing 'key priorities for research, which will provide a greater understanding of the site's broad range of archaeological monuments'. To-date, a considerable body of research has been completed including large-scale excavations at Newgrange and Knowth, field survey, analysis of the megalithic art and discussion of the landscape of the WHS.

Nonetheless, many key research questions need to be addressed - such as the dating and development of monuments, changes in the settlement record and how perceptions of the complex changed through time. Related management issues, preservation, conservation and interpretation within the WHS can also be seen as key issues.

On an international level, UNESCO has recognised that knowledge and understanding are fundamental to the identification, management and monitoring of World Heritage properties and the publication of a research framework for inscribed sites is widely seen as best practice in this regard.

Accordingly, the Heritage Council - in collaboration with Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government - has recently begun drafting a Research Framework for Brú na Bóinne - reassessing key priorities and looking at where future research should be directed. A series of public information seminars are planned to both inform and include all interested parties in this process.

A successful seminar was held in March 2008. To download Seminar Abstracts and Presentations - Click Here

To download the Consultation Document - Click Here

Submissions can be sent to -

Brú na Bóinne World Heritage Site Research Framework
The Heritage Council
Church Lane

- or can be emailed to - [email protected]

NOTE: The closing date for submissions is 1st August 2008

To download the Brú na Bóinne Poster - Click Here

Research Committee

Prof. Gabriel Cooney
(Heritage Council member; UCD School of Archaeology)

Mr. Ian Doyle
(Head of Conservation Services, Heritage Council)

Dr. Jessica Smyth
(Research Officer, Heritage Council)

Dr. Stefan Bergh
(Lecturer, Dept of Archaeology, NUI Galway)

Dr. Conor Brady
(Lecturer, Dundalk Institute of Technology)

Ms. Mary Cahill
(Assistant Keeper, National Museum of Ireland)

Mr. Tom Condit
(Archaeologist, National Monuments Service)

Ms. Ana Dolan
(Senior Architect, Office of Public Works)

Dr. Jane Downes
(Head of Department, Orkney College UHI)

Prof. George Eogan
(Knowth Excavations Project)

Dr. Loreto Guinan
(Heritage Officer, Meath County Council)

Ms. Fionnuala Parnell
(Office of Public Works)

Dr. Finbar McCormick
(Senior Lecturer, Dept of Archaeology, QUB)

Dr. Geraldine Stout
(Researcher; Archaeologist, DoEHLG)

Ms. Clare Tuffy
(Manager, Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre)

Dr. Elizabeth Twohig                     

Mr. Oliver Ward
(Secretary, Meath Archaeological and Historical Society)

Dr. Michael Potterton
(Senior Research Archaeologist, The Discovery Programme)

Ms. Jill Chadwick
(Conservation Officer, Meath County Council)