AT the archaeological site outside Milltown, Graham Laidlaw with Martin Jones. Photo: Ray Ryan

Have archaeologists discovered original N17 brewery outside Milltown?

BREWERIES are like buses: you wait ages for one, and then a whole line of them come together. At least that appears to be the case in the Tuam area. No sooner has local entrepreneur Sarah Roarty launched her N17 beer, but archaeologists working on the N17 enhancement project outside Milltown discover evidence of beer brewing in the area dating back 4,500 years.
The discovery has generated considerable interest locally but the archaeologist supervising the dig has told The Herald that while the find of a cluster of five subterranean Bronze Age cooking or brewing sites is very interesting from a historical perspective, there is very little for the public to actually see.
The discovery was made during a preliminary survey of the route for the upgraded N17 between Milltown and Ballindine. Such surveys are standard practice and 11 similar sites have already been discovered outside Tuam as the route of the new M17/18 Gort-Tuam motorway was being surveyed.
So it seems brewing beer along the N17 is nothing new, and Tuam’s latest brew is just a continuation of a very long tradition dating back to 2,500 years before the birth of Christ, at least.

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