MHG13051 - Chambered Cairn - Loch Borralan West


A Chambered Cairn on the east side of Loch Borralan.

Type and Period (1)

  • CHAMBERED CAIRN (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)

Protected Status

Full Description

A Chambered Cairn on the east side of Loch Borralan.

(NC 2603 1114) Chambered Cairn (NR) OS 6"map, (1966)

Round cairn of Orkney-Cromarty group, with a polygonal chamber. The cairn has been built on a slightly sloping site on the shore of Loch Borrolan. It had a diameter of c50 ft and still has a height of 7 ft, but it has been severely robbed on E side. It stands 6 ft within a ring of small boulders which seem to edge a very low platform on which the cairn is built. This feature is more noticeable on higher and more complete W side, where boulders are almost contiguous. The entrance passage has evidently been on E side but is now destroyed. The chamber is represented by two slabs 4 ft 10 ins apart, evidently walls of outer compartment of a bipartite chamber, and two transverse slabs beyond them. The inner end of chamber is obscured by cairn material.
A S Henshall 1963; RCAHMS 1911. <1> <2>

The cairn was Scheduled in 1935.

A chambered cairn, as described by Miss Henshall.
Revised at 1:10,000. Visited by OS (NKB) 23 6 1980, (GHP) 2 June 1962.

Surveyed by the Assynt's Hidden Lives project in November 2009. The cairn lies on a gently sloping area about 30m from the A837 leading to Loch Borralan. It is approximately 15m by 12m, aligned E-W with a maximum height of 2m. The cairn body consists of gathered stones of varying shape and size, though most are sub-angular and angular, averaging 0.4m long. The stones are piled to form a sub-circular cairn which has been robbed, particularly on the east side. The chamber is no longer visible, although a depression on the top of the mound may indicate this. No orthostats or lintel stones are visible and the kerb described by previous surveyors is barely visible. The site has been described as a round cairn of Orkney-Cromarty group with a polygonal chamber. There is no evidence of the slabs of the bi-partite chamber as described in 1911 and the site appears to have been considerably disturbed since the last report from 1962. <3>

The cairn was reassessed by Historic Environment Scotland in 2018 as part of their Assynt 2018 Scheduling Enhancement Project. The assessment against criteria demonstrated that the monument continued to be of national importance. The decision was to update the entry in the Schedule. The amendments to the schedule came into effect on 17/09/2018. <4>

GIS spatial data amended in 2019 according to location of site as seen on 2009 vertical APs. <5>

Sources/Archives (6)



Grid reference Centred NC 2603 1114 (26m by 26m)
Map sheet NC21SE
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish ASSYNT

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