New Children’s Hospital, St James, Dublin

AMS are the Project Archaeologists engaged by the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board on the New Children’s Hospital development. This project, within the grounds of the existing St James’s Hospital in Dublin, is of national strategic importance and aims to deliver a world-class facility to care for sick children and young people from all over Ireland. As the Project Archaeologists, we are responsible for overseeing the archaeological aspects of the preliminary site works, including the test excavations.

We also carried out additional research into the history of the site, which was previously occupied by the workhouse of the South Dublin Union (a battlefield during the Easter Rising of 1916) and, prior to this, the Dublin Foundling Hospital and Poorhouse. The main objective of the research was to collect additional historical information to assist with the planning and interpretation of the archaeological testing, and any subsequent testing or excavations that take place on the site.

Using the new information, we were able to match building remains with historical records and assign functions, lifecycles and important historical milestones to the archaeological remains. The information was also used to ensure that the archaeological testing strategy delivered value for money by remaining focused and targeted.