MHG3469 - Dalcrombie - Hut Circle


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Type and Period (1)

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

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Full Description

NH62NW 10 609 287.

Centred at NH 609 287 is a field system marked by stone clearance heaps, lynchets and traces of stone walls. A number of cultivation plots in the SE part measure about 30.0m by 10.0m. To the SW of the house of Dalcrombie in the modern fields sloping to Loch Ruthven are pockets of rough grazing containing clearance heaps, which suggests that the field system was formerly more extensive.
At NH 6095 2868 about 20.0m S of a depop. building footings are the remains of a circular structure which may be a hut circle. It measures c. 9.0m in diameter between the centres of a wall spread to c. 2.0m. The SW arc is destroyed.
Hut surveyed at 1/2500.
Visited by OS (A A) 9 December 1971.

What may be a dispersed township is spread across a broad terrace around Dalcrombie, mostly to the S of a ruined, straight, improvement-period wall and bounded, on the S, by the improved and enclosed fields to the N of Loch Ruthven. A single hut-circle and a scatter of small cairns survive at the edges of the medieval and later remains, suggesting that the extensive areas of prehistoric remains (NH62NW 7.00, 11, and 12) to the N extended down towards Loch Ruthven.
The township is represented by at least 15 buildings (USN93 437-9, 441-5, and 447-55), disposed in four clusters across a broad terrace to the N of Loch Ruthven and crossed by the public road. The buildings measure up to 16m by 3.5m within faced-rubble footings up to 1m in thickness and 0.4m in height. Some (USN93 438-9, 441, 443-5, and 453-4) have external drains while one (USN93 438) has an internal byre-drain. With the exception of one building (USN93 452), which is shown as unroofed on the 1st edition of the OS 6-inch map (Inverness-shire 1875, sheet xxx), none of the buildings is shown on the OS map. There are two kilns (USN93 446, 456), both without barns, at the NE and SE ends of the site; the former kiln is partially obscured by rubble. That to the SE (USN93 456) is situated on an artificial mound bounded by stream channels and has a bowl about 2m in diameter. Within the easternmost cluster of buildings there is a robbed hut-circle (USN93 440) which is bisected by a trackway.
Add dimensions.
The field-system is characterised by three types of remains. To the S there are strips of clearance along the crests of lynchets cutting obliquely across the slope about 10m apart and up to 150m in length; these are presumably the product of rig cultivation. At the N end of this area of rig cultivation, to the W of Dalcrombie, at least five lynchets, no more than 0.5m in height, define strips up to 50m in length and about 10m across, two of which are overlain by clearance cairns. These plots may represent an earlier phase of agriculture than the rig. There are scatters of small cairns, measuring up to 5m in diameter and 0.4m in height around the fringes of the site. Those to the W of the rig may be associated with it, while the other scatters to the N are more probably prehistoric in date. The third type of remains in
the field-system are banks, at least partially peat-covered, enclosing large areas and forming part of an extensive system of enclosure extending along the terrace to the N of the public road for about 1500m and to the NE and E for at least 1000m. (see also NH62NW 7, 11, and 12). (USN93 437-56)
Visited by RCAHMS (DCC) 20 October 1992.

Two roofed buildings, four unroofed buildings and six enclosures are depicted on the 1st edition of the OS 6-inch map (Inverness-shire 1875, sheet xxx). Five roofed buildings and eight enclosures are shown on the current edition of the OS 1:10000 map (1975).
Information from RCAHMS (AKK) 20 June 1996.

Sources/Archives (1)



Grid reference Centred NH 6096 2868 (443m by 415m) (3 map features)
Map sheet NH62NW
Geographical Area INVERNESS

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