EHG3669 - Trial excavation - Portmahomack, Tarbat



Harden, J. (unaffiliated)


June 1991


A small excavation was carried out by Jill Harden in 1991 across a cropmark seen on an AP in 1984 to the south of the old Tarbat parish church at Portmahohomack. The probable location of the ditch was estimated and a narrow (0.7m wide) trench was then dug by hand to confirm this. Having located the edges of the ditch, an area 4m by 10m was laid out and the modern ploughsoil (0.8m deep) was removed manually. A long section 1.5m by 8.75m was excavated across the ditch. However, at a depth of 1.7m the water table was reached. A pump was then used to remove the water from a small test pit. This enabled the recording of the depth of the ditch and the taking of samples of the organic rich layers at the bottom of the feature. Radiocarbon dates were subseqently obtained the following year for the organic samples. <1> Full published account. <2>

Sources/Archives (2)

  • <1> Text/Publication/Article: Harden, J. 1991. 'Portmahomack, Ross & Cromarty (Tarbat parish)', Discovery and Excavation in Scotland 1991. Discovery and Excavation in Scotland. 43. p.43.
  • <2> Text/Report/Fieldwork Report: Carver, M. (ed.). 1996. Tarbat Discovery Programme Bulletin No. 1 1995. University of York. 1996. Paper (Original). pp.17-19 & Fig 9.



Location Portmahomack
Grid reference Centred NH 91422 83847 (8m by 11m)
Map sheet NH98SW
Geographical Area ROSS AND CROMARTY
Civil Parish TARBAT

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

  • Enclosure - Tarbat Old Parish Church, Portmahomack (Monument)

Record last edited

Nov 27 2014 2:18PM

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