MHG1540 - Possible Cairns, Feithe Bhuidhe


Site of 3 possible cairns.

Type and Period (2)

  • CAIRN (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)
  • (Alternate Type) STONE QUARRY (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

The three features (A-C) are predominantly grass-covered in otherwise heather-clad ground.
'A' is on a rise and measures 17m NE-SW, by 12m and 0.6m high. The central area is depressed and the NE half shows signs of disturbance; in the S periphery a prostrate slab is exposed 1.4m long by 0.8m wide by 0.25m high. No other stone is evident.
'B' is on a rise and measures 14.5m diameter by 0.8m high; the surface is broken. Two slabs protrude horizontally in the periphery, one in the NE the other in the E, with signs of a peripheral ridge extending from the latter round to the SE quarter. Down the slope from these two slabs a number of random spaced slabs protrude.
'C' is on level ground above the NW bank of a stream and measures 7m NE-SW, by 4m and 0.3m high. In SE edge is an upright slab 0.6m high by 0.6m wide and 0.15m thick.
The limited and amorphous nature of the remains preclude accurate assessment. They may be denuded cairns, though there is an absence of cairn material. Many of the "slabs" described appear to be natural shelving rock, and these areas may be old surface stone quarries. Visited by OS (J M) 1 July 1981.

(A: ND 0599 5801, B: ND 0597 5806 and C: ND 0606 5812) Cairns (NR) (sites of) OS 6"map, (1963)

From the description given above, the two mounds (and also a third) were located.
'A', at ND 0599 5801: Situated on a small isolated knoll is a disturbed area measuring some 17m by 13m. A prostrate slab protrudes at the base on the SE side.
'B', at ND 0597 5806: Situated on a knoll is what appears to be a mutilated mound of grass-covered stones. It measures about 15m in diameter and has a maximum height of about 1.2m. At the E edge are the tops of three upright slabs, two close together, the other 5 m to the S. Here too are a few scattered stones on the slope of the mound.
'C', at ND 0606 5812: A mutilated mound 14m in diameter and 0.1m high. There is an upright slab 0.3m high in the SE edge.
Although very little remains of any mounds on all three sites, it is possibly that they are the sites of cairns, of which there are many in the immediate locality.
Visited by OS (J L D) 10 April 1962.

There are the sites of two constructions, presumably prehistoric, on the low side of the road from Shurrery to Brawlbin, about 1 mile SE of the church at Shurrery. Being entirely overgrown with a deep sward, their character is not evident. The construction nearest the road bears the name of 'Shean Buidhe'.
RCAHMS 1911, visited 1910.

RCAHMS, 1911, The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments and Constructions of Scotland. Third report and inventory of monuments and constructions in the county of Caithness, 105, No. 388 (Text/Report). SHG2664.

Sources/Archives (1)



Grid reference Centred ND 0590 5800 (14m by 14m) (Buffered by site type)
Map sheet ND05NE
Civil Parish REAY
Geographical Area CAITHNESS

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