MHG3937 - Fort - Tordarroch


No summary available.

Type and Period (1)

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

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

At NH 6766 3341 is a glacial hillock overlooking the River Nairn. Approximately around the rim of the summit is an intermittent line of earthfast boulders enclosing an area measuring 45.0m NNE-SSW by 35.0m transverseely. It would seem from their size and position that these stones represent the remnants of the outer face of a fort-wall otherwise destroyed (probably robbed for nearby depopulated buildings). On the highest point is a sub-rectangluar platform measuring c.12.0m by c.7.0m, apparently of a late date, probably a base for a modern flag staff. Major Shaw believes this hillock is a motte (Information from C J Shaw). Surveyed at 1/2500.
Visited by OS (A A) 11 January 1972.

An exploratory excavation across surface indications of two defensive walls revealed the foundations of an inner wall 0.25m wide consisting of a single line of boulders laid end to end. 4m downslope from this were indications of an outer rampart of much more massive proportions. There were no indications of occupation.
L M Wedderburn 1975.

The entrance to Tordarroch Fort is marked by a gap in the outer wall, and a hollow way cut into the slope on the E side. A date in the historic period should not be ruled out for this site.
Surveyed in 1989 as part of a survey of lands around Tardarroch, Daviot and Dunlichty to identify and map archaeological monuments threatened by the proposed afforestation scheme. See report. <1>

This fort occupies the summit of a steep-sided knoll to the SW of Tordarroch House. The defences can be traced for most of their circuit as a line of earthfast boulders which, in places, form the outer face of a stony bank spread to 3.1m in thickness. In general this wall, follows the edge of the relatively flat summit area, but on the NW it drops down the hill to follow the crest of an almost precipitous slope. The enclosed area measures 37m from NE to SW by 30m transversely (approximately 0.09ha). There is a gap on the E, the direction of easiest approach, through which leads a hollow way. This is probably the original entrance, as the walls on either side of it follow different alignments, the wall to the S turning inside the line of that to the N.
Within the enclosure, occupying the highest point of the knoll, there is an oval enclosure measuring some 12m in length by 7m in breadth within a grass-grown stony bank. Both the NE end of this bank and the fort wall to the NE of it were sectioned during the 1975 excavation, the trench from which remains open, but no relationship between the oval enclosure and the fort could be observed either in the trench or from the surface remains.
In the SW corner of the fort there are about nine shallow pits, measuring up to 2m in diameter. These are probably storage pits associated with the township to the E of the fort (NH63SE 49).
(USN93 27)
Visited by RCAHMS (SDB) 30 November 1992.

This site was included in the Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland online database. See link below for site entry. <2>

Sources/Archives (5)



Grid reference Centred NH 6765 3341 (100m by 100m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NH63SE
Geographical Area INVERNESS

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (1)

External Links (2)

Comments and Feedback

Do you have any more information about this record? Please feel free to comment with information and photographs, or ask any questions, using the "Disqus" tool below. Comments are moderated, and we aim to respond/publish as soon as possible.