MHG30086 - General Wade's Military Road, Alvie


A section of Wade's military road at Highland Wildlife Park survives as an earthwork. A short section of walling runs alongside the road.

Type and Period (1)

  • MILITARY ROAD (Post Medieval - 1560 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

The site comprises circa 360m of Military Road. The road is visible as a raised grassy platform to the north-east and is cut into the ground in the south-west.
Information from Dorothy Rankin, 1997.
Archaeological Management Plan, AOC. (Ref 103).

J Aitken : 01/08/01.

An archaeological watching brief was undertaken in the vicinity of the section of Wade's road in The Highland Wildlife Park, Kincraig. The route of a proposed underground cable was going to cross a section of the road, but the route was diverted to avoid any impact on archaeological features to the western section of the area observed. Across the eastern section of the cabling route, the roadside wall of the military road was noted. It had apparently been constructed of alternate layers of turf and rounded cobbles c. 8-14cm in diameter. These had however collapsed and fused and now appeared as a single deposit. The layer of dark, humic material beneath this dyke was too rich to represent buried topsoil. Owing to the oblique and curving nature of the section through the old wall it was difficult to interpret what this stratified darker band represents. It could be that the turf and stone wall might have been constructed alongside Wade’s Road sometime after completion of the road, on top of a shallow ditch which had filled with silt and surface detritus from the road.

The 18th c. predecessor to the modern A9 road was built by General Wade following the 1715 Jacobite rising. It runs roughly parallel to the modern road about 0.3km north of it. Some sections survive as trackways, others as simple earthworks. The construction of the main car park of the Wildlife Park has destroyed a section of the road. However, to the east it survives as an earthwork. A noticeable dyke runs along the southern side and a wall, 03m high and 1m wide rungs alongside the road. <1>

This is shown as an alignment of Wade's military road on 1st edition Ordnance Survey mapping. <2>

The military road was noted in a DBA and walkover survey by J Wood in 2004 on behalf of the Highland Wildlife Park. It entered the Park on the western edge at NH 8004 0359 and exited on the east at NH 8092 0381. Much of the military road line had been used by modern tracks but in a section survived a grass-covered earthwork. This section of road in particular had potential for survival of original fabric as it has gone out of use as a route. So it could have contained buried 18th c. features such as culverts, water-bars etc., as well as evidence for the general construction of these roads. Few similar examples have survived in this state as mostly they have been re-used as modern roads and trackways. Alongside the whole military road there was potential for evidence of associated features or finds including buildings, temporary structures, or markers. <3>

Sources/Archives (3)



Grid reference Centred NH 8064 0371 (728m by 297m) (3 map features)
Map sheet NH80SW
Civil Parish ALVIE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (2)

External Links (0)

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