MHG3749 - Torvean


No summary available.

Type and Period (1)

  • FORT (Early Bronze Age to Pictish - 2400 BC? to 900 AD?)

Protected Status

Full Description

NH64SW 2 6437 4315.

(NH 6437 4315) Motte (NR)
OS 25"map, (1964)

A fort stands on the top of a hill on the ridge of Torvean. It is of oval form, 100' long by 50' wide, protected by a surrounding ditch forming an irregular oval, 340' long by 200' wide, at a considerably lower level on the slopes of the hill. On the N side is another trench, intermediate between the outer ditch and the top, which has a gradual ascent towards the E end where access to the top is easiest. There appeared to be no trace of stone building in connection with this structure.
ISSFC 1921 and 1885.

Not a motte but an Iron Age fort, generally as planned by ISSFC, occupying an overgrown, steep-sided glacial ridge oriented ENE-WSW. The outer line of defence consists of a ditch cut into the slope with the material piled on its outer lip to form a rampart. In the N, where best preserved, the ditch averages c3m in width and c. 0.8m in depth
with the rampart averaging c. 4m in width, both are reduced to a terrace along the S slopes of the ridge. About 9m inside the ditch on the N is a terrace, averaging c1.5m in width, which may represent an unfinished line of defence. There is now no trace of its change of direction in the E as planned by ISSFC (1885).
The entrance was probably in the ENE at the easiest approach along the spine of the ridge. Here the defence terminates on the NW side of the spine, and on the SE side it is destroyed for a length of 20m. Any further details are obscured by a modern wall which runs along the spine and bisects the fort. The level summit, measuring about 30m x 14m, is featureless.
Surveyed at 1:2500. (visited by OS {W D J} 1 April 1960)
(This feature was also described as a fort in 1960 by OS surveyor (WDJ); the name "Motte" appears to have been misapplied)
Visited by OS (R L) 19 Feburary 1970.

Noted as motte.
P A Yeoman 1988.

This site was included in the Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland online database. See link below for site entry.<1>

Sources/Archives (7)



Grid reference Centred NH 6438 4315 (127m by 109m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NH64SW
Geographical Area INVERNESS

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