MHG14367 - Cist burial, Balnabruach


No summary available.

Type and Period (2)

  • CIST (Bronze Age - 2400 BC to 551 BC)
  • BURIAL (Iron Age - 550 BC to 560 AD) + Sci.Date

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A chance find of human remains was made on 24th June 1993 during excavations by the Highland Regional Council Department of Water and Sewerage, to insert underground pipes at Balnabruaich, Portmahomack. A human skull and other bones had been disturbed by the machine during excavation of the trench. The remains appeared to be those of a single adult which appeared to have been interred within the fragmentary remains of a stone cist or short coffin. Damage to the remains were considerable. It was suggested that the burial probably dated to the Bronze Age, although the lack of accompanying grave goods made this uncertain. <1> <2> <3> <4> <5>

The finds were reported in the Press and Journal of June 25th 1993. <6>

The bones were subsequently analysed by DH Lorimer. The remains probably belonged to a young adult male in his late teens or early twenties. <7>

A watching brief was subsequently maintained intermittently by Highland Regional Council and further discoveries were made (see MHG14365 & MHG14366).

The records from the watching brief were re-examined and skeletal material analysed. The human remains from this area (site 1, burial A) are considered to be the disturbed remains of a young adult male associated with slabs which were interpreted as the remains of a short cist. Radiocarbon dates were obtained for the Balnabruach group as part of the Tarbat Programme and Burial A was dated to 410-230 cal BC (calibrated at 2 sigma), placing them in the Iron Age. <8>

The updated osteology report can be viewed online as part of the Tarbat Discovery Programme Archive, hosted by ADS. See link below. <9>

Sources/Archives (9)



Grid reference Centred NH 9105 8408 (4m by 4m) (Buffered by site type)
Map sheet NH98SW
Geographical Area ROSS AND CROMARTY
Civil Parish TARBAT

Finds (1)

  • HUMAN REMAINS (Iron Age - 550 BC to 560 AD) + Sci.Date

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

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