MHG6387 - Hut circle - Beillach A' Ghlinne (An Sithean 6)


A hut circle at Beillach A' Ghlinne (An Sithean 6), Skye.

Type and Period (1)

  • HUT CIRCLE (Early Iron Age - 361 BC to 91 BC)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A hut circle at Beillach A' Ghlinne (An Sithean), Skye.

Lying on the top of a prominent knoll which lies to the E of the tramway at 60m OD is a large circular enclosure which measures 11.4m in diameter over walls 1.1m thick. A substantial field dyke passes over the knoll just to the E of the enclosure. Visited by C Stansfield, IJ and GH 1 April 1990. <1>

A hut circle (site LS41), 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. It has a well preserved, 11.5m diameter, circular rubble bank with an obvious south east facing entrance. This site, unusually, lies on the summit of a prominent hillock. Excavation demonstrated that the site had been constructed over an earlier occupation horizon (not C14 dated) the remains of which were sealed beneath the rubble bank. Finds associated with both occupations included fragments of pot-boiler, beach pebbles (?unused pot-boilers) and a lump of ochre. A sample taken from beneath the hut wall returned an OGS date of 361-172BC (Middle Iron Age). Another sample from a floor surface returned a date of 231-91BC (Middle Iron Age). <2>

Summary of the landscape survey project and test pitting campaign. <3>

163500 822400 HPC41 An Sithean 6: The hut circle was 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 hence some may have been associated with it. HPC41 is at a distance of 5000m from High Pasture Cave and is 600m from the cluster of HCs around the chambered cairn (see MHG5318). HPC41 is a circular structure and it lies on the flattened summit of a natural knoll. The platform is built up from this level surface.The vegetation both in the surrounding landscape and inside the structure is mainly bracken and grass. Views from the site are panoramic inland. HPC41 is 60m from a stream and is 2000m SW of the sealoch at Broadford Bay. Average internal diameter is 8.25m, external diameter is 12.25m. The walling consists of a rubble bank covered in turf. Wall thickness is 2m with maximum height 0.6m. There is a definite entrance facing SE. The entrance terminals are extended, with passage width 1.5m externally and 1m internally. Passage length is 3m. 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, fire cracked stones and pebbles, and a lump of ochre. OGS under the HC wall gave a Middle Iron Age date of 361-172BC, and from the floor surface a date of 231-91BC was obtained, also Middle Iron Age. <4> <5>

[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 2009 APs. <6>

Sources/Archives (6)



Grid reference Centred NG 6348 2240 (18m by 18m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NG62SW
Geographical Area SKYE AND LOCHALSH
Civil Parish STRATH

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

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External Links (2)

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