MHG61710 - 'Boat-shaped' enclosure - Broubster


A 'boat-shaped' enclosure at Broubster.

Type and Period (1)

  • ENCLOSURE (Neolithic to Late Iron Age - 4000 BC? to 560 AD?)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A 'boat-shaped' enclosure at Broubster, one of two recorded by the OS at this location in 1981. Recorded as Feature 'F'.

Centred at ND 028 611, on a gently sloping, NE-facing hill-side there is a settlement of five hut circles (A-E) and two small, boat-shaped structures (F, G) which appear to be contemporary with the huts. The five hut circles are circular or nearly circular, and range in size from 7.5m internal diameter to 10m by 9m internally. All have simple entrances either in the SE or E.
Obscured by reeds, 'B' is the best preserved hut. It measures 9m in diameter within a wall spread to 2.5m and 0.6m high. The other huts are in a moderate state of preservation. The two small enclosures, F and G are very similar being internally 5m NE-SW by 2.5m transversely, and 5m by 3m respectively. In each case the SW end is noticeably pointed. The walls are about 1m wide and 0.3m high. No entrances can be identified with certainty.
In the proximity of the huts and enclosures there is a field system of about 1.5 ha comprising stretches of wasted field walls, lynchets and scattered clearance heaps from contemporary cultivation. No plots are evident.
Surveyed at 1:10,000. Visited by OS (J B) 22 September 1981.

These hut-circles are plotted on the record sheet at the following locations:
A: ND 0282 6125
B: ND 0292 6128
C: ND 0292 6121
D: ND 0280 6114
E: ND 0281 6112
F: ND 0287 6124
G: ND 0293 6114
Information from NMRS (R Mowat) 7 February 1994/

Note: The NGRS above for D & E are in error and should be:
D: ND 0290 6114
E: ND 0291 6112

The feature is visible in in LiDAR data gathered by AOC Archaeology in 2011 as part of the mitigation for the visual impact on the archaeological landscape associated with the proposed Baillie Hill windfarm, Caithness. <1>

The site was visited and recorded by topographic survey in 2015 as part of the 'Hidden Bronze Age Landscape of Caithness Project' undertaken by AOC Archaeology Group and members of the Castletown Heritage Society with local volunteers. The project ran as a series of four week long field schools training volunteers in techniques of field survey, systematic soil sampling and targeted excavation. Fieldwork in week one of the fieldschool (22-27/06/2015) focussed on using LiDAR data in the field, use of GPS to create simple maps of archaeological sites and ground-truthing sites through LiDAR. In week two (13-18/07/2015) participants learned how to create accurate plans using manual taped offset and plane table survey and total station and GPS surveys. Site 11: A sub-oval to sub-rectangular structure comprised of a stone and earth bank. The site measures 7.3m long and between 3.8m and 5m wide externally and 5m long and a width between 1.9m-2.2m internally, with a slight depression at the SW end. The bank itself varies in width from 0.5m to 1.7m and remains to a height of 0.3m. There is no evidence of an entrance. The site lies in a generally undulating landscape and is roughly in the centre of an area of several hut circles and small cairns. Site 11 lies 21m to the NW of Site 9 (see MHG61707). <2>

GIS spatial data created in 2020 according to the location of the feature as seen on 2009 vertical APs. <3>

Sources/Archives (3)



Grid reference Centred ND 0288 6124 (10m by 10m) (2 map features)
Map sheet ND06SW
Civil Parish REAY
Geographical Area CAITHNESS

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (1)

External Links (2)

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