A topographic survey of the area around Hilton of Cadboll was undertaken by Field Archaeology Specialists (The University of York) in 1997. The purpose of the boundary and contour survey was to provide base maps within which archaeological remains could be placed within their present land use and topographical context as well as providing the basis for future evaluation and deposit modelling work. It was hoped that subsequent geophysical surveys (see EHG765) would define the focus or foci of the archaeological site allowing any further invasive evaluation work to be well targeted, thereby minimising its destructive impact on the site while maximising its research yield. A further objective of the survey was to identify the original position of the Hilton of Cadboll carved stone which is now in the care of the National Museums of Scotland. It had been proposed that a full-size replica of the stone should be erected on the site and a suitable location for the replica was required.
The internal and external boundaries of the site were surveyed using a total station theodolite (Wild TC1010). Further data points were then collected by the survey of points at the top and bottom of major breaks of slope as well as lines of points at 5-20m intervals depending upon the topographic variation within an area. This data was then transferred to a computer where the data was processed to produce a contour map of the site at 0.5m intervals using Surfer version 6 software. The resulting contour map was output on a high definition laser printer.
The contour map clearly illustrated how well enclosed the site is by a steep slope to the north and west (rising from 6m to 22m AOD), and by the firth to the south. The only easy access to the site by land is along the shoreline from the south-west or north-east. A broad L-shaped bank was identified during the survey running from the bottom of the steep slope at the eastern end of the site, down towards the firth before turning south-west to run parallel to the shore. This feature appeared to be an attempt to define or control access to the site, however, there was no indication of its date. <1>
MHG8546Symbol Stone - Hilton of Cadboll (Monument)
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Record last edited
Jul 31 2023 1:08PM
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