MHG17479 - Hut circles - Allt A' Choire Mhoir (Glen Loth)

Summary

Three conjoined hut circles at Glen Loth.

Type and Period (1)

  • HUT CIRCLE (Neolithic to Late Iron Age - 4000 BC? to 560 AD?)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

Three conjoined hut circles at Glen Loth. Originally recorded by the OS as NC91NW24, but subsequently re-catalogued in the original SMR as NC91NW0001 (M).

(NC 914 183) Hut Circles and Enclosures (NR).
OS 6"map, (1964)

On the left bank of the Allt a Choire Mhoir, about 1 mile above its junction with the Helmsdale River are a number of circular enclosures; one is a complicated construction consisting of two circular enclosures and an oval one, all cojoined. (For the others see NC91NW 1, 6, 25). RCAHMS 1911.

At NC 9125 1824 on the moor near the foot of the steep slopes of Cnoc Craggie Beag is a nucleated homestead comprising three con-joined hut circles. All three have well defined walls of bare stones, with an average spread of 2.0m, except the one to the N, where the S arc has been destroyed and obscured by peat growth and later activity. All are circular and measure internally from the SW in a clockwise direction, 9.1m, 9.7m and 7.3m respectively, in diameter. The huts have their entrances in the E arc with portal stones flanking the gaps of average width 1.0m. The entrances of the largest and smallest huts have become choked with stones, the latters with part of a field wall of a later period. Later work has overlaid and obscured the huts in places; it is probable that they were utilised to form some kind of enclosure possibly for stock. Extending from the huts in a NE direction is further walling; whether it is contemporary or not cannot be determined.
See NC91NW 1 for details of the field system.
Re-surveyed at 1:10 560.
Visited by OS (J D) 31 May 1961 and (J B) 5 May 1976.

The hut circles (JAN050, JAN051 and JAN052) were visited by A Welti, A MacInnes, A Coombes and others in 2016 as part of research for a dissertation on hut circles in Wester Ross. This was part of a degree course overseen by Aberdeen University. There are numerous ruinous circular stone structures, interpreted as brochs and groups of hut circles, in the wider area in the vicinity of the Strath; some of these are oval, some circular. This is a cluster of 3 superimposed structures which are part of a group of 14 HCs, sited in Strath Kildonan. JAN050 overlies JAN051, which in turn overlies JAN052. The HCs are 200m from a stream and 1000m from the River Helmsdale which flows east. The structures sit in a gently sloping grazed landscape, NE facing, surrounded by field walls and some clearance cairns. Surrounding vegetation is mostly grass with some heather and rushes. Inside the structures there is a mixture of heather and grass. They are c. 100m from both JAN049 and JAN048:

291255 918219 Glen Loth 8A JAN050: Hut circle A: This oval stone structure is in good condition. It sits on a platform built out from the slope and has panoramic views inland. Many wall facings are visible as is the ring bank. Inner diameters are 8.5m and 10m, outer diameters are 12.2 m and 14.5m. The double skinned wall is 2.5m thick with maximum height 1.2m. A definite entrance faces NE. The entrance has both internal and external width 1.0m, and entrance length of 3.0m. A later stone wall adjoins JAN050 near to the entrance on the outer SE arc and runs to the outer S wall of JAN052 ©.

2291262 818229 Glen Loth 8B JAN051: Hut circle B: This circular stone structure is in good condition. It sits on a platform built out from the slope and has panoramic views inland. Many wall facings are visible as is the ring bank. Average inner diameter is 12.05m, outer diameter is 14.9m. The double skinned wall is 1.8m thick with maximum height 0.5m. There is a definite NE facing entrance which has been blocked off (see location sketch). The passage width is 1.2m externally and 1.0m internally, with passage length 2.0m. The structure overlies JAN052 and is overlain by JAN050. A small shieling hut has been built against the inner wall of the NW arc.

291271 818224 Glen Loth 8C JAN052: Hut circle C: This circular stone structure is in good condition. It sits on a platform built out from the slope and has panoramic views inland. Many wall facings are visible as is the ring bank. The average inner diameter is 8.05m, outer diameter is 11.65m. The double skinned wall is 1.8m thick with maximum height 1.0mm. A definite entrance faces NE with passage width both internal and external of 1.0m, and passage length 1.8m. The entrance has been blocked off. A field wall runs from the NW and curves past the entrance close to the NE arc of double walling. It continues its run in an E direction. A line of stones has been placed within the HC, running in a N/S direction. JAN 052 is overlain by JAN051. <1> <2>

[Note: a database was set up as part of research for the dissertation and was subsequently expanded as an extension of the We Digs Project (see website link below). The full access database can be made available to enquirers/researchers if requested - contact HER for details].

GIS spatial data amended in 2020 to location as shown on 2009 APs. <3>

Sources/Archives (4)

Map

Location

Grid reference Centred NC 9126 1823 (36m by 36m) (Buffered by site type)
Map sheet NC91NW
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish KILDONAN

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

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External Links (1)

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