MHG59702 - Hut circle - An Sithean


A hut circle at An Sithean.

Type and Period (1)

  • HUT CIRCLE (Late Bronze Age - 1010 BC to 840 BC)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A hut circle at An Sithean.

This hut circle (site LS34) is one of 29 identified or re-recorded by M Wildgoose in a walkover survey as part of the High Pasture Cave and Environs project. Two test pits were excavated in the hut circle in 2011. A large negative platform, containing a discontinuous 12 meter diameter circle of large boulders, similar to Site LS33 above. Excavation again revealed an occupation horizon consisting of compacted ash and occasional pot-boiler fragments. A fragment of polished stone axe was recovered from beneath the outer wall. The site now retains water and is very wet. Samples taken from an ash-filled pit in an occupation floor horizon returned a radiocarbon date of 1010-840BC - late Bronze Age. <1>

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

162711 822157 HPC34 An Sithean 4: The hut circle was visited by A Welti and J Guest in 2010 as part of research for a dissertation on hut circles in Wester Ross. This was part of a degree course overseen by Aberdeen University. 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 hence some may have been associated with it. HPC34 is sheltered from the N by the gentle SW facing slope. It is at a distance of around 4000m from High Pasture Cave. About 60m to the S of the HC is a green area surrounding a large chambered cairn. An uneven dyke of bedrock and boulders runs 30m S of the HC. Wall facings, both inner and outer, are visible in the W and SE arcs. The area is very wet and further wall facings may have sunk into the bog. The landscape is gently sloping to the SW. Surrounding vegetation is a mix of heather, grass and reeds. Inside the structure is very wet and vegetation is the same with the addition of moss. Views from the site are panoramic, inland. Distance from a stream is 300m, from the Broadford River is 300m and from freshwater Loch Cill Chriosd is 1600m. The structure appears oval in shape, with external diameters 14.3m and 11.4m. This may be due to tumbled facing stones to the SE. Internal diameters average at 10.0m. The double skinned wall varies in thickness from 2.2m in the SE to 1.5m in the SW. Maximum height of the wall is 0.5m. A possible entrance faces S with passage width 1.9m internally and externally. HPC34 is 120m from HPC36 (see MHG), 100m from HPC33 (see MHG59701), 200m from HPC119 (see MHG5319) and 200m from HPC32 (see MHG59693). This HC was test-pitted by M Wildgoose and S Glover as part of the High Pasture Cave and Environs project, (see MHG5230). A fragment of a polished stone axe was found, and a Late Bronze Age date was obtained from an ash filled pit in the occupation floor; 1010-840BC. <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 amended in 2019 to location as shown on 2010 Aps. <5>

Sources/Archives (5)



Grid reference Centred NG 6270 2216 (18m by 18m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NG62SW
Geographical Area SKYE AND LOCHALSH
Civil Parish STRATH

Finds (0)

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External Links (1)

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