MHG59563 - Hut circle - Suardal, Skye


A hut circle, dating possibly to the early Iron Age at Suardal, Skye.

Type and Period (1)

  • HUT CIRCLE (Occupied, Early Iron Age - 550 BC? to 1 AD?)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A hut circle (site LS64), one of 29 identified by M Wildgoose in a walkover survey as part of the High Pasture Cave and Environs project. Three test pits were subsequently excavated in the hut circle in 2011, but although finds were recovered, no radiocarbon date was obtained. It is provisionally dated to the early Iron Age based on a single pottery sherd.

A circular 12.7m diameter rubble bank revetted by boulder orthostats. The entrance through the 1.50m thick wall faces to the south. The site lies amongst open improved pasture on the floor of the strath. A central slab hearth was surrounded by degraded charcoals. Finds from the occupation horizon include fragments of pot-boiler, hazelnut shells and a sherd of possible Iron Age pottery. <1>

Summary of the landscape survey project and test pitting campaign. <2>

162151 820622 Suardal 1 HPC64: The hut circle was revisited and recorded by M Wildgoose in 2011 as part of research for a dissertation on hut circles in Wester Ross for A Welti. This is one of a number of prehistoric roundhouses in the area in and around Strath Suardal. This Strath runs NE/SW from Broadford to Torrin. These roundhouses are of special interest as all are within relatively easy reach of the site of High Pasture Cave (MHG32043) and some may have been associated with it. HP64 is sited on gently undulating ground north of the slopes of Beinn Shuardail. The surrounding landscape consists of open improved pasture on the floor of the Strath. Vegetation both outside and inside the structure consists mainly of grass, bracken and rushes. The site has panoramic views inland. It is 200m from a stream. A field dyke runs tangentially to the western walling. There is a slight mound in the centre of the structure. The circular platform is enclosed by a circular turf and stone bank revetted with boulder orthostats. Average inner diameter is 8.5m, external diameter is 12.5m with wall thickness 2.0m and 0.5m maximum height. The entrance is clearly defined, facing SE, with width of passage 1.5m both internally and externally. HPC64 is at a distance of 300m from HPC66 (see MHG) and is 3000m from High Pasture Cave. This HC was test-pitted by M Wildgoose and S Glover as part of the High Pasture Cave and Environs project, (see MHG5230). Excavation produced charcoals, a pottery sherd, pot boilers, burnt hazelnut shells but no C14 date. <3> <4>

[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 created in 2019 to approximate location as shown on 2010 vertical APs. <5>

Sources/Archives (5)



Grid reference Centred NG 6214 2064 (20m by 20m)
Map sheet NG62SW
Geographical Area SKYE AND LOCHALSH
Civil Parish STRATH

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (1)

External Links (1)

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