MHG10024 - Fort - Dun Creich


No summary available.

Type and Period (3)

  • FORT (Early Iron Age to Pictish - 550 BC? to 900 AD?)
  • RAMPART (Early Iron Age to Pictish - 550 BC? to 900 AD?)
  • VITRIFIED STONE (Early Iron Age to Pictish - 550 BC? to 900 AD?)

Protected Status

Full Description

NH68NE 1 6510 8824.
Dun Creich (NR) Vitrified Fort (NR)
OS 6" map, Sutherland, 2nd ed., (1907)

Dun Creich: A fort occupying summit of a peninsula rising 370' above Dornoch Firth and heavily overgrown. The summit of the hill is enclosed by a rampart measuring 260' x 220', but highest part of it is further defended by another rampart enclosing an area 170' x 100'. In the centre of the inner area are the ruins of a castle said to have been built by Paul Mactire in 13th century, and it is not impossible that the two are closely connected. A patch of vitrifaction of a massive nature is exposed outside and beneath W arc of the inner rampart. Although the circumstances are obscure, it may be an earlier wall, robbed and overlain by inner rampart.
RCAHMS 1911, visited 1909; M A Cotton 1954; R W Feachem 1963.

Dun Creich is in such a ruinous condition that an accurate assessment is impossible without excavation, but at least 3 periods appear to be represented; the outer wall, which is probably not contemporary with the inner wall, and the medieval tower.
The topographical situation and the size of the area enclosed by the outer wall are correctly described by Feachem (1963). The course of the outer wall is clear but it is denuded and as no faces are visible its thickness cannot be determined. Outcrop rock is occasionally incorporated in its construction. There are two gaps, probably entrances, one in W and other opposite in E. Immediately inside it on NW are more substantial remains of another, probably later, wall about 3m thick and some 40m long.
The inner wall on encloses an area c100' E-W by c.70' N-S, but it is so reduced that its course is difficult to trace. The outer wall may overlie it in the N. The patch of vitrified material remains as described.
Within inner wall the highest point of the hill is castle, a simple rectangular tower, now reduced almost to its foundations. Traces of inner face suggest internal measurements of c.6.5m E-W by c.5.5m, within a wall c.2.3m thick. It is surrounded by a ruined sub-rectangular wall at a distance of c.3m in the S and c.5m elsewhere. The "well", outside outer wall in S, is a fissure in the rock which still contains water.
Revised at 1/2500 (OS {WDJ} 28 May 1963).
Visited by OS (A A) 11 November 1969.

(NH 6510 8824) Dun Creich (NAT) Fort (NR) OS 25" map, (1969)

Dun Creich is generally as described in the previous field report, the only point of contention being the 'inner wall', which is described as enclosing an area about 100ft by 70ft. It appears that this rampart has been overlaid for much of its extent by the 'ruined sub-rectangular wall' which surrounds the castle and it is no longer possible to determine the area enclosed by this rampart.
Revised at 1:10,000 Visited by OS (J B) 12 September 1980.

This site was photographed from the air by Jim Bone in 2008. <1>

The site was included in the Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland online database. See link below for site entry. <2>

GIS spatial data created 2018 based on OS Master Map. <3>

Four pieces of vitrified rock from the inner rampart are were collected from Dun Creich in May 1999. They are within the collections of Historylinks Museum under Acc. No. 2001_28. Also in the collection from Dun Creich are two small pieces of slag from iron smelting (2009_046_03) and two plain stone balls.
See link below to the Dornoch Historylinks Image Library for pictures of the vitrifed stone and slag. <4> <5>

Sources/Archives (12)



Grid reference Centred NH 6509 8823 (91m by 91m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NH68NE
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish CREICH

Finds (2)

  • SLAG (Iron Age - 550 BC to 560 AD)
  • STONE BALL (Undated)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (5)

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