Know Your Locality – Roscommon – February-March 2024

Overview: It is amazing what you can discover about your local area from the snug safety of your home. We are delighted, through funding from Roscommon County Council, to offer a FREE hybrid (online plus in person field trip) course that will take you step-by-step through the available online sources that will allow you to paint a picture of the geological, archaeological, and historical events that happened close to where you live. While the course will look at examples from throughout Ireland, it will focus on the geology, archaeology and history of the county of Roscommon. As such the course is aimed toward residents of Roscommon (who will be given preference for available course places) as well as enthusiasts of Roscommon’s natural and cultural heritage.

The course will be delivered through six online tutorials every Tuesday over six weeks commencing Tuesday 20th February 2024. We will begin by looking at the very bedrock under your feet, examining the geological processes and glacial events that shaped the landscape and formed the soils. The course then focuses on the impacts of humans on that landscape over time, from pre-history to the last century.

The first workshop will include a summary of the course content and format. Before the course starts participants will be sent a list of resources/links  so that they can study their own locality. Each workshop will teach an aspect of Irish geology, archaeology and history, and go through a series of fabulous online resources, allowing participants to build a picture of their home over time. Workshop 6 will comprise a wrap-up, outlining the information obtained by the participants which can be utilised to tell the geology, archaeology, and history of their localities. Workshop 6 will also outline how these skills can be used to make your own submission(!) to the ‘KnowYour5k’ initiative by the Heritage Council and National Museum of Ireland. Gathering these submissions for County Roscommon is a key outcome of the course.

On Sunday 24th March, we will go on a field trip to explore the landscape, archaeology of a Roscommon heritage gem (the place and exact time are TBC), but it will be in the late morning, and we will try to include a nice coffee shop at the end 🙂

Course Details

  • Course Dates and Times: February 20 – March 26 (six one-and-a-half-hour sessions (6.45pm – 8.15pm GMT) in total on February 20, 27 and March 5, 12, 19 and 26
  • Field Trip: Sunday March 24th (mid-morning for c. 2 hours; time and venue TBC)
  • Where: From your home! (except for the field trip, of course)
  • Equipment: You will need access to the internet and a device (preferably a laptop or PC)
  • Enrolment Status: OPEN
  • Course Type: Local Geology/Archaeology/History
  • Instructor: Dr Stephen Mandal
  • Cost: FREE
  • Application Deadline: n/a (until fully booked)

Steps to enjoy the weekly Know Your Locality course:

  1. Sign up (fill out the simple ‘Register here’ form)*
  2. Receive the link to the first tutorial 24 hours before the live zoom session
  3. Participate in the online tutorials from the comfort of your home
  4. Enjoy the field trip, meet Steve, Nollaig and your fellow participants
  5. Discover your local area with the online sources provided in the course

* Please note that places are strictly limited on this course. While the course if free – thanks to support from the Heritage Council – please only register if you are committed to attending, as otherwise you will be taking someone else’s place.

Register here

Safety Notice

This is principally an online course and as such, activities are based on using online resources. The course may bring to your attention some really interesting findings about your local area. Please bear the following in mind if exploring your area.

Never enter private land without permission and please be aware of any risks in entering a monument or accessing it, such as crossing a field containing livestock. If leaving home please adhere to all government public health advice regarding Covid-19 and do not enter land, or sites which are closed to the public (for guidance see: It is an offence to interfere with an archaeological site and/or to search for archaeological objects using a metal detector without written consent from the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (see also: Many archaeological sites may be in an unstable or ruinous condition, do not place yourself at risk or break any advisory or safety notices for any reason, such as a hope of getting ‘a better photo’!